Being a Product Manager is good training for life

Being a product manager helps you live a good life: You become confident in dealing with different domains of knowledge and different types of truth, and arbitrating between them. You can imagine and weigh up possible futures, and sell and fight for the one that seems best. You make decisions with imperfect information. You lead […]

Innovation in Transport – TfL Access all Areas

Notes from a panel discussion I attended at an event on accessible transport, hosted by TfL. I attended because I wanted to learn about TfL’s strategic approach to innovation and accessibility. Individual introductions Mike Brown, Commissioner, TfL The high-level vision for accessibility on London’s transport: Everyone needs to be able to travel across the capital […]

Rethinking Capitalism

Notes on a lecture by Eric Beinhocker on ‘The economy as a complex and evolving system’ The income of the bottom 90% of earners in the US has stagnated from 1973 onwards. Pre-1973 growth was more inclusive – the bottom 90%’s income grew faster than the average. Now the reverse is true, with the top […]

The value of opening up government data

I presented at the British Library’s event “Open and Engaged” as part of Open Access week on 22 October 2018, on the value of opening up government data. Here are the slides, which I’ve adapted into the following post, with a post-script of additions generously suggested by the ever-excellent Steve Messer. Why has government opened […]

Tom Loosemore on Digital Government at the Science and Technology Committee, 27 November 2018

Tom Loosemore was interviewed by the Parliamentary Science and Technology Committee on 27 November 2018. Tom was Deputy Director at the Government Digital Service 2011-15. He has a good reputation and I wanted to hear what he had to say. I found him an articulate, expert and passionate advocate of doing digital properly. I pulled […]

Assisted Digital – what it is and how to do it well

What is Assisted Digital? There will always be people who won’t or can’t use digital services: Access Confidence Skill level Language Literacy When government started creating new online transactions, digital services were created, with offline ‘Assisted Digital’ support, so that in theory no-one was left behind and unable to access services. Why did I want […]

Jobs to be Done on GOV.UK

A few months ago Imeh Akpan ran a session for GOV.UK Product Managers going over the Jobs to Be Done Framework. She’s been looking into how we might use it to think about our users better. Jobs to Be Done is about understanding the underlying problem. What’s the differnece between a Job and a Problem […]

This is how I work

Location: London Current Gig: Senior Product Manager, GOV.UK, Government Digital Service. Current mobile device: Samsung Galaxy S8 Current computer: At home: A self-assembled desktop from 2014, optimised for quiet acoustics and now with a 1070 graphics card, or a Asus ZenBook UX305CA laptop. At work: A 13″ Macbook Air. One word that best describes how […]

Digital Product Managers should be able to code

Aspiring Digital Product Managers often ask me if they need to know programming to do their job. I always used to say ‘no’, but now I’ve changed my mind. As a Digital Product Manager, you own the value and purpose of your team’s work. You are responsible for the vision and the ‘why’. Understanding ‘how’ […]