• Round Pegs in Square Holes: How to Achieve Product Market Fit

    "If you have to ask whether you've found product-market fit, you haven't." - Eric Ries, Lean Startup. According to Marty Cagan, market - fit is about "finding a product that can power a viable business." This not only includes defining a product that customers will pay for, but also figuring out the right market segment to target, the pricing model, how to talk about the product to the market. It can be the most challenging and most rewarding stage of the product lifecycle. Join us to hear how three product leaders have gone through that process and the lessons they have learned from their journeys. Our panelists for this evening will be: Nick Starai: Chief Strategic Officer of NMI (https://www.nmi.com/) Short Bio: Nick co-founded NMI in 2001 at the height of the "Dot Com Boom". Starting as a rules-based credit card fraud prevention tool, NMI quickly grew to be one of the top payment gateway providers, now on track this year to process over 1 billion transactions. Chris Brown: Chief Product Officer of Relativity (https://www.relativity.com/) Short Bio: Chris is the current CPO at Relativity. Before that he spent 10 years in Orbitz Worldwide (now Expedia). There he held a series of product and technology leadership roles—including Group Vice President of Mobile and Senior Vice President & Chief Product Officer. Most recently, Chris was CEO and a board member at Kapow, a Chicago-based start-up that builds an online corporate events platform. During his three years at Kapow, the company had 85% year-over-year revenue growth. Raj Karmani: Founder of AskWhai (https://www.askwhai.com/) Short Bio: AskWhai is an startup in Chicago focuses on applications of AI. One of its missions is to allow smaller businesses easier access to AI technology. Previously, he was the CTO at Farmer's Fridge, a venture-backed startup on a mission to make fresh food available 24/7 through smart fridges. Raj's earliest venture public benefit corporation Zero Percent, which combined his passion for technology, volunteerism, and entrepreneurship. Zero Percent provided an online food rescue platform for restaurants and food operators to donate any excess food to local charities in an easy, reliable and safe way. The platform coordinated more 1.5 million meals from 100+ businesses to 80+ nonprofits in Chicago, Champaign and Nashville. Moderating this cnversation will be Alex Moy, Director of Product at Relativity. Alex has been a long time member of the ChiPMA community, and he's been on ChiPMA panels in the past. AGENDA 5:30 - 6:30 --- Food & Networking 6:30 - 8:00 --- Panelist Discussion 8:00 - 8:30 --- More Networking ***NO REFUNDS!*** If you can't make it, you can apply your fee to the next event; just contact one of the organizers.

  • How to organize Product Teams for success as you scale

    Narrative Science


    As a company grows from a startup to a growth stage company, your single team has to split into multiple teams. Spotify’s thought leadership on the Pods/Tribes/Chapter model (https://labs.spotify.com/2014/03/27/spotify-engineering-culture-part-1/) has influenced how many organize their product teams, including today’s panelists. Each panelist will tell a story of their experience with different team structures at SpotHero, Network Merchants, Here, and Sprout Social. We’ll then discuss challenges and lessons they learned from reorganizing teams, and the pros and cons with different structures from the perspective of Product and Engineering. Panel Matthew Schmidgall - CTO @ NMI Jenny Wanger - Senior Product Manager @ SpotHero Clarke Retzer - VP Engineering @ Vibes (formerly Director of Engineering @ Here) Arnita Curtis - Sr. Director of Product @ Sprout Social AGENDA 6:00 - 6:30 --- Food & Networking 6:30 - 8:00 --- Panelist Discussion 8:00 - 8:30 --- More Networking

  • Running a Product Innovation Program: Stories From the Field

    Join our panelists to learn how different companies in Chicago run their Innovation programs. We want to focus this event on practical tips about how to start and run these program. We will discuss topics such as: * How to define innovation vs product enhancement? * How companies can define the horizon planned for their innovations? * How to define goals and success in an innovation program? * Way to evaluate initiatives? * Maturity levels of innovation programs. * Team structure. Feel free to submit questions during your registration. We will also be taking questions with Slido (www.slido.com) Slido allows attendees to submit questions and lets others vote on them. This ensures that we answer the most asked questions. Panelists: Ken Kunz: VP Technology at Vibes ( https://www.linkedin.com/in/ken-kunz/ ) Mauro Mujica: Chief Product Officer at Narrative Science ( https://www.linkedin.com/in/mauromujicaparodi/ ) AGENDA 6:00 - 6:30 --- Food & Networking 6:30 - 8:00 --- Panelist Discussion 8:00 - 8:30 --- More Networking ***NO REFUNDS!*** If you can't make it, you can apply your fee to the next event; just contact one of the organizers.

  • ChiPMA Post-Holiday Happy Hour Party!

    Moe's Cantina River North


    Just when you thought that February will be a social "freeze", ChiPMA is announcing its annual social event! Lets get together for networking, learning about new opportunities, and kickoff a 2019 full of great ChiPMA events. Bring your business cards and be ready to share news of job openings with your peers at this event! We will have a great selection of beers, wines, and margaritas! Graze on wave after wave of appetizer plates! It's all included as part of your admission ticket. ChiPMA is paying 80% of the cost, offering you an amazing deal at $10 per ticket. Access to this event is strictly limited to 60 attendees, so don't wait. It WILL sell out! NO REFUNDS As usual, you can apply your payment to our next event if you pay but cannot attend.

  • Resume Workshop

    Vibes Media

    ChiPMA's primary is goal is to serve the product management community in Chicago. So far we've done that by inviting speakers with diverse backgrounds to speak about a wide variety of subjects. In January, we'll be doing more. In addition to our yearly winter holiday event ( details to be posted soon), we are going to do a resume workshop. Here is what we hope to achieve: Your Resume + ChiPMA Resume Workshop --> Version of your resume that will WOW recruiters! AGENDA 6:00 - 6:10 -- Arrive, sign-in, get comfortable 6:10 - 6:40 -- Presentation by Haydee Hernandez 6:40 - 8:00 -- Small Groups Resume Review Session I hope it goes without saying but BRING YOUR RESUMES! Experienced hiring managers for Product positions will be there to provide feedback and give guidance on how to make your resume interview-ready! Light snacks and drinks will be provided. Speaker Details: Haydee Hernandez (https://www.linkedin.com/in/hernandezhaydee/) Haydee currently works as a Senior Product Manager at NCSA (www.ncsasports.org) focusing on the Lead Generation Funnel and Retention. She is working on aligning Sales, Marketing, and Customer Service to build a stronger omni-channel experience for the high school athletes NCSA is helping land a spot on a college athletics team. She has also conducted a resume workshop for Product School titled, "How to Make a Resume Product Friendly".

  • Zero to One: Breaking Into and Succeeding as a New Product Manager

    There's no college degree for product management, which makes becoming a product manager a process mired in uncertainty. Department heads have difficulty defining the role and entry-level PM's have difficulty getting hired. Even if they get hired, these PMs will often have a rough time, as they will often be forced to figure out their role on their own. But fear not! A panel of 4 product managers, with varying levels of years of experience, will answer your burning questions. Whether you are looking to break into product management, starting a new product management role, or looking to hire/grow your product team, this discussion will have something for everyone. For anyone that's interested in the event, here's some optional homework: Read the article below to see a breakdown of skills necessary for product managers organized by seniority level, and see where you fall. https://medium.com/pminsider/product-manager-skills-by-seniority-level-a-deep-breakdown-cd0690f76d10 AGENDA 5:45pm - 6:30pm --- Food & Networking (Bring a valid picture ID for check-in) 6:30pm - 8:00pm --- Panelist Discussion (and food, but quietly) 8:00pm - 8:45pm --- More Networking (and any remaining food) Conversation Talking Points: BREAKING INTO PRODUCT MANAGEMENT 1. How to deal with your lack of product experience 2. The do's and don'ts of interviewing 3. Do I need an MBA? Do I need a Tech background? Do I need X,Y,Z? NEWLY HIRED PMs 1. How to conquer your[masked]. How to define your role in an early product company 3. What skills are needed for every PM level SEASONED PMs LOOKING TO BUILD A PRODUCT TEAM 1. What difficulties do new hires experience and how can you avoid those pitfalls? 2. Where can you find a young PM to train and mold into a leader? 3. Looking to hire a new PM (50%+ Of ChiPMA members are looking to hire or be hired!) PANELISTS - Nick Saggese (Associate Product Manager @ Mediaocean - https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicksaggese/) - Megan Bubley (Product Manager @ SpotHero - https://www.linkedin.com/in/megan-bubley/) - Rob Galliani (Product Manager @ Oranj - https://www.linkedin.com/in/robgalliani/) - Kate Bhatia (Director of Product & Experiences @ Ivee - https://www.linkedin.com/in/katelaures/) Moderator: Guillermo Villegas (Associate Product Manager @ The Catch Company - https://www.linkedin.com/in/guillermo-villegas-3080a011b/) NOTE: - NO REFUNDS. If you've paid and cannot make it, let us know, and either: -- You can have someone else go in your place -- Apply your payment to the next event - Also if you are an Uptake employee, you do not have to pay! So please do not sign up!

  • New Kid on the Block -- Applications of Blockchain Tech Beyond Cryptocurrency

    Nearly everyone in the tech space has heard of "blockchain technology". It's usually spoken in the same sentence as "cryptocurrency" or "bitcoin". But blockchain technology is more than the stuff that your friend is convinced will make them a millionaire in the next 5 years, and there are companies today using this technology for things such as contract enforcement, information validation, and property tracking. To teach us about the various applications of blockchain technology and the work being done in the field today, we have a panel of 3 professionals in the space that will be covering it from several different angles. Here's a fantastic video on the subject to introduce you to some of what we'll be talking about: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lD9KAnkZUjU PANELISTS Taylor Gerring (https://www.linkedin.com/in/taylorgerring/) Short Bio: Taylor is the former Director of Technology at Ethereum and was a member of the original Ethereum founding team. Since then he has founded Blockchain WTF, a website dedicated to providing information about blockchain technology. Robert K. Elder (https://www.linkedin.com/in/robertkelder/) Short Bio: Robert is the President and Publisher at Blockchain News, a publication focusing on the most urgent blockchain industry developments of the day, delivering everything from granular tech pieces to expansive culture profiles that are important to industry leaders, investors and data analysts. - Come with questions! We want this discussion to be interesting to YOU. - Make sure your phones are charged, as we will be facilitating on-the-fly questions through https://www.sli.do/ - Food and drink will be provided. - If you're employed by Oranj, DO NOT RSVP on this Meetup. You get in free. Just show up. AGENDA 6:00 - 6:30 --- Food & Networking 6:30 - 8:00 --- Panelist Discussion (and food, but quietly) 8:00 - 8:30 --- More Networking (and any remaining food) NOTE: NO REFUNDS. If you've paid and cannot make it, let us know, and either: 1. You can have someone else go in your place 2. Apply your payment to the next event

  • Four [Leaders] of Product Walk Into a Bar...

    Conversant Media


    ... and while I may not be able to finish that joke, we really will have four leaders of product management in a room with alcohol (and food) where they'll be talking about what it's like to captain a product organization. Some of the things we'll be discussing: - Useful tips for people just starting out in this type of role - The differences in leading a product team at a large vs. small organization - The differences between all the titles a leader of product can have (VP of Product, Head of Product, Director of Product, Chief Product Officer, etc.) - What product managers can do to get to this point in their careers. - What NOT to do as a [leader] of product PANELISTS Joel Pulliam (https://www.linkedin.com/in/pulliam/) Short Bio: Joel is the Senior Vice President of Product Management at Conversant. Prior to that, he was the Senior Vice President and Chief Product Officer at Resonate, the Chief Product Officer at Fishbowl Marketing, the Vice President of Products at AddThis, and the Vice President of AOL Product Marketing at America Online. Jennifer Busenbark (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jenniferbusenbark/) Short Bio: Jennifer is the Vice President of Product Management at ActiveCampaign. Prior to that, she was the Director of Product Management at Braintree. Margaret Jastrebski (https://www.linkedin.com/in/margaret-jastrebski/) Short Bio: Maragret is the Senior Vice President of Enterprise Products at ShopRunner. Prior to that, she was the Vice President of Product Management at Signal and the Vice President of Product at Narrative Science. Steven Jones (https://www.linkedin.com/in/stevenrjones/) Short Bio: Steven is the Vice President of Product Development at Centro. Prior to that, he had that role at Project44 and at SpringCM. - Come with questions! We want this discussion to be interesting to YOU. - Make sure your phones are charged, as we will be facilitating on-the-fly questions through https://www.sli.do/ - Food and drink will be provided. - If you're employed by Conversant, DO NOT RSVP on this Meetup. Contact one of the ChiPMA organizers so we have an accurate head count, but you get in free :) AGENDA 6:00 - 6:30 --- Food & Networking 6:30 - 8:00 --- Panelist Discussion (and food, but quietly) 8:00 - 8:30 --- More Networking (and any remaining food)

  • Humans Need Not Apply? - The Future of Product Management

    Expedia (formerly Orbitz)


    In Humans Need Not Apply (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Pq-S557XQU), an educational viral video reported on by Forbes, The Business Insider, and the Huffington Post, the narrator makes the argument that all jobs will be automated at some point in the future, and that human labor will no longer be required. What aspects of product management could conceivably be automated in the not too distant future? What skills should we think about developing now to remain competitive in the future product management job market? What types of new and exciting tools will be available for us to use in our careers? Our talented panel will help answer these questions and more. Food and drink provided, as always. PANELISTS: Alex Castrounis (www.alexcastrounis.com) Short Bio: In addition to being a product and data leader, Alex is an author, podcaster, and teacher. His areas of expertise include machine learning, IoT, and lean product development. Kevin Goulet (https://www.linkedin.com/in/kevingoulet1/) Short Bio: Kevin has over 20 years of product leadership experience, with areas of expertise including data management, migration, and analytics, at companies of varying sizes and stages of growth. In addition to this, he is a mentor at The Garage, (https://thegarage.northwestern.edu/) Northwestern University's hub for student entrepreneurship and innovation. Julia Kanter (https://www.linkedin.com/in/juliakanter/) Short Bio: Julia is the Director of Product at Expedia, and has led the development of a variety of innovative products, including ScratchPad, a product reported on by Forbes and other sources for its extensive and effective use of experimentation to improve the products' adoption and utility. Julia's areas of expertise include iterative product development and data-driven product decision-making. 6:00 - 6:30 --- Food & Networking 6:30 - 8:00 --- Panelist Discussion (and food, but quietly) 8:00 - 8:30 --- More Networking (and any remaining food) CONVERSATION OUTLINE We'll loosely follow this structure during the conversation, and ask the kinds of questions listed below. 1. Product Management Past: How has it evolved up to today's point? "Besides for company/title changes, how have you all seen your respective roles change/evolve over time?" 2. Product Management Present: How is the field evolving today? "What skills are becoming less and less useful for those who call themselves 'product managers' in the wake of new technology and evolving specialties?" 3. Product Manager Future: What will our jobs look like soon? "What technologies have you seen that begin to automate the work of product managers?" Make sure your phones are charged, as we will be facilitating on-the-fly questions through https://www.sli.do/ Food and drink will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there!

  • Beyond A/B testing – How companies conduct Product Experimentation

    We all know that experimenting is a big part of Product Management. We build MVP's to validate value propositions and product market fit. We test our hypothesizes on user behavior in a variety of ways. We even build prototypes to gain real-life user feedback. However, experimentation is not easy, and could be very costly in terms of resources and time, specially in B2B companies. Join our panelists to learn how they get leadership buy-in to conduct experiments and the processes they use to run their experiments. We will talk about topics ranging from experiment frameworks to real-life examples. Questions welcome! We will talk about: 1) How their companies experiment (e.g., design sprint, qualitative research, quantitative research)? 2) What metrics they measure experiments by? 3) A time an experiment failed and what they learned. 4) A time an experiment succeeded. 5) How they pitch experiments to management (cost vs benefits) and report back on them? Speakers Abbie Bys (https://www.linkedin.com/in/abbie-bys-6656355/) Director of Product at Label Insight! (https://www.labelinsight.com/) Regan Davis (https://www.linkedin.com/in/patrickregandavis/) VIP of Product at jellyvision (https://www.jellyvision.com) Rex Chekal (https://www.linkedin.com/in/rexchekal/) Creative Director at Table XI (https://www.tablexi.com/) This event is done in partnership with Pendo: https://www.pendo.io/