Neil Chalk

 I am currently awesome at Product Management.
 Within 5 years time I want to be Head of Product.
 My goal is to become CPO.

Product Leadership with a side of Technical Management

As the company expanded further I moved into the gap in the product area. Starting off with product ownership in agile processes. I backed this up with a certificate in Technology Management , which included a brilliant course on Innovation. To round out with more business skills I also did the CORe course from Harvard Business School extension.This period of experience gave me the confidence to create Bashfully with a colleague as a side project to further develop our skills ... and help you!

Microsoft: DAT249x Ethics and Law in Analytics and AI on edX
2017 - 2017
Ethics AI Analytics Law

What I learned:

  • Foundational abilities in applying ethical and legal frameworks for the data profession
  • Practical approaches to data and analytics problems, including Big Data and Data Science and AI
  • Applied data methods for ethical and legal work in Analytics and AI

View certificate

Data Scientist with R on Datacamp
2017 - present
R RMarkdown

A track of courses that combines statistical and machine learning techniques with R programming to analyze and interpret complex data.I have taken this to help my project “R for Product Management” and enhance my skills as a data guided Product Manager.

View profile and progress

Side project: Untitled product management book
2017 - present
Product Management Product Development

Book version of my blog with extra content, updates based on more recent experience, and professional editing. This is focused around my journey becoming a technical product manager with anecdotes and tips to help others - especially developers! - on the same journey.

Brighton Marathon 2017
2017 - 2017

My second Marathon. Building on experience since he first one learned a lot about deliberate training and practice. A skill that I have also applied to my work life.

Side project: Bashfully
2016 - present
HTML Product Development Product Management

Product Lead, Elixir, Heroku, Gitlab CI · Market research, product fit, UX design, HTML, copywriting

Project to help students and recent graduates create awesome online profiles. Bashfully will shake up the traditional online resume.

Connect with me on AngelList to collaborate on side projects.

CORe: Credential of Readiness at HBX / Harvard Business School
2016 - 2016
Analytics Business Economics Financial Accounting

HBX CORe (Credential of Readiness) is a 120-150 hour certificate program on the fundamentals of business from Harvard Business School. CORe is comprised of three courses - Business Analytics, Economics for Managers, and Financial Accounting – developed by leading Harvard Business School faculty and delivered in an active learning environment based on the HBS signature case-based learning model.

2015 - 2015

As part of a team of four took on the Gurkhas in the Trailwalker. The Trailwalker is an unforgettable endurance challenge to get your team of four 100km across the South Downs in under 30 hours. Is it tough? Of course. Is it worth it?Absolutely.

We raised over £1,500 for charities in Nepal.

Product Manager at 15below
2013 - present
Mentoring Agile Product Management R Roadmaps User Journeys Analytics Product Development

* Founder member of Product team at 15below and creating product processes
* Managing the product development budget
* Report on the Product related objectives in the 15below Business Plan.
* Working to understand the business requirements for product specifications and converting these into use cases.
* Acts as Product Owner in an agile development team when needed.
* Providing the Marketing team with the background for case studies, product documentation and promotional material.
* Supporting internal processes such as Change Advisory Board, Design Review Committee and Project Standards to ensure that the "right thing" gets developed "the right way".
* Providing internal technical consultancy and business analysis of airline workflows and reservation system interactions.

Configuration Consultant at 15below
2012 - 2013
Product Development Agile Line Management Product Ownership Requirements Gathering SQL

Reporting to the Production Services Manager:
* Plan and manage client PASNGR upgrades, including analysis and QA.
* Establish, evolve and document formal upgrade and deployment processes.
* Act as a technical consultant to 15below, supporting all areas of the business.
* Build and maintain a catalogue of services and configuration information related to those services (Configuration Management Database).
* Building knowledge of product and configuration to assist with establishing baselines and feeding into customer's SLAs and KPIs
* Act as part of Change Advisory Board.
* Own Technical Debt Register.
* Feed customer specific scenarios into QA processes / automated testing

Postgraduate Certificate in Technology Management at The Open University
2008 - 2014
Innovation Roadmaps Volere requirements

Three courses that gave me a solid foundation into the business side of managing software development processes.

  • M882 Managing the software enterprise (2008)
  • T848 Managing technological innovation (2013)
  • M883 Software requirements for business systems (2014)

Training, conferences and books aren't the only way of sharing information and improving your craft. This repository contains many useful links for Product Managers old and new.
Product Management
After finding lots of incomplete intros into doing interesting analysis of data from Twitter, I have forked and extended one of them to show how topic modelling can be done easily in R
As the name suggests, this project is for Product Managers dealing with data that want to use R as a tool to analyse that data and produce reports/visualisations. I have tried to make all the scripts work from first download.
R RMarkdown

Technical leadership

As a natural development from being a developer in a small company I moved from being tech lead on projects to being its project manager. During this time I also gain PRINCE2 foundation and attended an Agile for Leaders course. I learned a lot about communication here during my time setting up an office in Melbourne. I also rekindled an interest in visual storytelling, doing various evening classes in photography and a motion picture production course.

Brighton Marathon 2010
2010 - 2010

Not only the first Brighton Marathon but also my first marathon. This was really the start of my love of running. Learned a lot about arbitrary goals, motivation, and managing performance.

I raised over £250 for Cancer research.

ABFS, Diploma Course in Motion Picture Production at Brighton Film School
2009 - 2010
Film Editing Cinematography

A film course that covered screen writing, editing, shooting with 8mm, 16mm, and 35mm film as well as HD digital.

IMDB profile

Analyst Developer at 15below
2009 - 2012
SQL Mentoring Requirements Gathering Visual Basic SourceSafe ASP

Secondment to the support team bringing technical and process experience as well as being an escalation point when the team leader is unavailable. I have helped automate some support tasks, improving team efficiency and reducing the support overhead. Another enjoyable aspect of my role has been in recruiting placement students and a permanent developer to the support team.
I also provide technical input on existing business functionality to both the design review committee and production change control board. In these responsibilities I aim to maximize the technical debt that can be repaid in new enhancements and to minimize the risk to production in roll out and project go live. Both roles allow me to look beyond an immediate task at hand to the wider business and then how we can increase business value.
Highlights include:
* Co-ordinating with the Client Support Team Leader the update of the PASNGR reservation system interface for a US client when their NewSkies system was upgraded to 3.2.
* Helping to deliver and co-ordinate the roll out of an enhanced voice solution in PASNGR, which supported the use of bookings, that had been processed by Sabre Reaccommodation Manager, for another US client.

Technical Project Manager at 15below
2008 - 2009
Requirements Gathering Product Development PRINCE2

Secondment to Melbourne to assist in setting up 15below’s first overseas office to support their Asia Pacific clients.
Continued support to the UK office providing solutions to complex technical issues on project work there.
Project management and requirements gathering for local projects and Australian hours escalation point for the support team.

My life as a Developer

After graduating I joined Atkins full time in their Management Consultancy business unit, working on some interesting infrastructure projects. Being the home of PRINCE2 this gave me a really good insight into document workflows on massive projects. Going to 15below was a change in scale, but allowed me to develop my craft ... although I did miss Unix! During this time I also had a side project creating a CMS in Perl.

Analyst Developer at 15below
2005 - 2008
Requirements Gathering Product Development SourceSafe SQL Visual Basic

Development of market leading notification solutions for the travel industry.
Porting a core component from VB6 to VB.NET including some key enhancements to dynamic content functionality.
Deliverability Consultancy - using a variety of content, software, white list and DNS methods to improve the rate of emails to reach the inbox.
Technical leadership on the implementation of PASNGR solutions for new clients.
Technical leadership and project management during the implementation and rollout of functionality, e.g. to increase automation allowing the reduction of call centre staff and reduction of costs or to increase of revenue via targeted cross selling.

Consultant at Atkins Management Consultants
2001 - 2005
Visual Basic Unix SQL Perl Requirements Gathering Python SourceSafe PRINCE2

Development of extranets and online collaborative systems
Research into group awareness in collaborative virtual environments as part of the Atkins Research and Innovation department, including EU funded research. For example IST programme IST-10846 TOWER: Theatre of Work Enabling Relationships.
Part of a team that developed central bespoke portals for the management of programmes of works for both Shell Oil and the Royal Bank of Scotland. I was specifically responsible for developing a transport ordering B2B solution between a local County Council and Atkins

Postgraduate courses in Computing and ICT at Open University
2001 - 2004
DB2 SQL Smalltalk OODA Java

Postgraduate courses in Computing and ICT, 2001 - 2004

Postgraduate Modules passed:

  • M877 Advanced database technology (2004)
  • M878 Object-oriented software development (2002)
  • M879 Distributed applications and ecommerce (2001)

Student days - the foundation of my craft

I started off my journey into software development after initially wanting to be a theoretical physicist. I started with VB3 on Windows 3.1 and C++ in DOS. During University I branched out into Java, Prolog, and Matlab. My industrial placement at Atkins allowed me to develop these skills in a commercial environment, along with documentation and source control.

Lab Assistant (Technician Grade C) at University of Sussex
2000 - 2000

Duties included helping new students familiarise themselves with the Unix terminals and system demonstrations.

Student Trainee at Atkins
1998 - 2000
Visual Basic SQL SourceSafe ASP

Help Desk Agent/Service Support
As Help Desk Agent my duties included; first line support, configuring and installing new PCs, logging calls and preparing templates for company standard correspondence such as faxes, memos and minutes. Also developing a website for the department's asset management. As part of the Service Support team I was involved in a project that identified any Y2K related problems and prepared the companies financial systems for a successful rollover from 1999 to 2000.
Responsibility for planning, implementing and improving various small projects involving an online collaborative system, which included giving a presentation to the client's project managers.

BA (Hons.), Artificial Intelligence at University of Sussex
1997 - 2001
AI Prolog SQL Genetic Algorithm Natural Language Processing Machine Learning Perl C Neural Networks Unix Java Matlab Visual Basic

An interdisciplinary course covering Computer Science, Linguistics, Philosophy and Psychology courses.

3rd year project: “SCARGIL: Data Mining using the Genetic Methods” produced a system that took a dataset and after a period of induction using evolutionary computing output classification rules. The program was given a dataset of DNA to produce protein splice site predictions. This project allowed me to develop my skills in cutting through domain knowledge, where I was not a domain expert, and solve the key problem presented.

Yorkshire Coast College
1995 - 1997
Visual Basic

  • City and Guilds Information Technology 7261/01 205 Visual Basic 1
  • A-levels in Physics, Mathematics, and Chemistry

Technical Support at Network Si Ltd
1995 - 1995
Excel VBA

On site at Mitsubishi Finance, Broadgate, London.

Duties included creating Microsoft Excel 5 spreadsheets with VBA code for data entry and asset management.