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How do I help them resolve this?

Last post 01:35 am March 16, 2023 by Pierre Pienaar
2 replies
11:55 pm March 14, 2023

I have recently started working at a new company, it's a very small company with only 1 scrum team.

We have a successful product, and we use a service to host that product.

We're trying to remove our dependency on the host, by building our own host service. 

The PO has used this service for many years, knows it very well, and wants to design this service to mirror the functionality of the one he's using. 

The lead designer, has worked on services for 20 years, but on ones that compete with the one the PO is using currently. 

I've helped them to resolve a lot of the terminology issues, but we're still having a major hang up. 

The lead developer wants to build the backlog based on architectural design, and is thinking bigger than just the current product we sell, but to future products other customers might want.

The PO, wants to design based on the existing product, and service.

I've tried customer journey mapping, and even several working sessions to try and establish a clear product goal, and a few features that would deliver a single slice of functionality.

But, the lead developer is concerned we'll design a solution that is short sighted, and doesn't enable future needs, and could lead to serious issues.

At the end of the day, the lead developer will give in to the PO, but it's a struggle trying to merge their needs. How would you go about helping them visualize a goal that delivers the needed functionality iteratively, but doesn't overlook the potential future needs?

Keep in mind, the "customer" is the PO, this is all being done behind closed doors. All of my training says deliver iterative, single slices across the stack... But, scrum assumes a complex problem without a known solution... So, I'm not sure how to help coach this.


06:46 pm March 15, 2023

Has anyone in the company really tried to clarify the earned value of current service architectures versus the unearned value of an improved design?

Refer to Evidence Based Management on, you might also consider using the S-curve of Christensen's Innovator's Dilemma to help focus discussion.

01:35 am March 16, 2023

Define the minimum viable product (MVP)

Deliver in increments

Has anyone in the company really tried to clarify the earned value

I agree with above and have a proper discussion of earned value of the different approaches. The bigger vision project might give more value. Then also projects fail, because people want to add to much, and all in one go as they afraid features will not be done later. That is why I like the MVP approach. 

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