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From Software Engineer to Product Owner

I received the following question:

"I know a coder who wants to become a Product Owner. Which literature should he read? He is 0 experienced but wants to make more product decisions. He has 2-3 years of experience as a Frontend Engineer."

My answer, assuming that with "PO" he means the role that works on the delivery side of Product Management with a cross functional team:

"In general, he can find a lot of material on and about PO related topics, he should start there. The material is very good. Then, he should look up different prioritization techniques" It's important to set the right priorities, in the selection of the topics during research & discovery as well as during delivery. We always need to make sure that we're working on the right things.

"As he worked as software engineer, I assume he knows agile development. Then, he should probably learn to negotiate. 'Never Split the Difference' is a really good book, and additionally to that he should read 'Getting to Yes'." They're showing two different approaches on negotiation. I see them as complementary. "The book 'Inspired' is a good intro. It's for Product Managers in general but there are generally applicable topics in there that he as a PO will need. He will run for example workshops and he should understand why stories should be as small as possible, and some more other things. Oh, and he should be aware that it's a misconception that the PO makes all product decisions 😄"

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