Difference between PO & PM

What is the key difference between a Product Owner and a Product Manager in one sentence, Go!

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I think it depends on how your organization defines roles. To me it’s all the same. Product Owner is scrum legacy and I don’t use it because my teams don’t generally run “scrum by the book”.
I’ve heard some people saying “product owner may be the name of your role, product management is the job you do”, and I generally agree.
But again, comes down to your organization, and whether you are running SAFe or some stuff like that that actually sees a difference between the roles.
More than a sentence, sorry :laughing:

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I am in Sweden and I used to work with a CTO that insisted all Product Managers working in internal platform teams needed to be called Product Owners. No other reason than legacy. Funny enough, the people in those roles preferred to call themselves Product Managers, so the company eventually transitioned to that nomenclature, even though sometimes they would publish job listings under Product Owner under the assumption it would be more familiar to the potential candidates.

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I used to work with a CTO that insisted all Product Managers working in internal platform teams needed to be called Product Owners. No other reason than legacy. Funny enough, the people in those roles preferred to call themselves Product Managers, so the company eventually transitioned to that nomenclature, even though sometimes they would publish job listings under Product Owner under the assumption it would be more familiar to the potential candidates.

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Product owner role is a subset of product manager, as a result of the definition set by SCRUM.

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TBH job titles can mean so many different things in different companies. In my experience though POs are handed requirements and informed of the roadmap, PMs define direction and therefore the roadmap. The role of a PO as part of SCRUM is only one part of a true PMs job responsibilities

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PO means you’re a PM working in SCRUM. The confusion comes from SAFE where they have PO and PMs working together as @michaelyoffe describes here.

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The product manager discovers what users need, prioritizes what to build next, and rallies the team around a product roadmap. The product owner is responsible for maximizing the value of the product by creating and managing the product backlog. This person creates user stories for the development team and communicates the voice of the customer in the Scrum process.

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PM is the job title.
PO is the role PM plays in scrum (but SAFe “borrows” the name to make it a different role that’s just junior PM in reality)

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SAFe is horrible, I’d argue that they should replace the word Product with Project if using SAFe

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I think you can make a distinction between ‘legacy’ companies that were not originally tech/software companies and tech/software-first companies. These legacy companies have realized that tech/software/digital products have become so important, and slowly but surely adopted Scrum as a way to become more ‘agile’ and avoid/solve the problems that come with traditional waterfall development. And some have gone further and adopted SAFe (ironically falling back to waterfall in a way).
Then there are the tech companies for whom digital product development (and therefore ‘product management’) is more second nature. These companies approach product management as more than just ‘doing scrum’, and tend to stay away from frameworks like SAFe.

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