This June we brought together 18 speakers from the world over with 1000 attendees, for five days of incredible content, entertainment and a good number of impromptu pet photos for SofaConf.
SofaConf was our first foray into online events and we were delighted by the positive feedback we had from attendees and speakers. Amidst all the challenges 2020 has presented to our communities it felt great to be able to bring folks together and share amazing content from industry leaders directly from their living rooms to ours…
We’re now able to publically share all the talk videos and live Q&As from SofaConf. Whether you are interested in product design, content design, research, service or interaction design we’re sure you’ll find these brilliant talks and discussions inspiring and full of valuable learnings you can action.
We’d like to extend a huge thank you to all our speakers and our wonderful compères, Rachel McConnell and Andy Budd for such a great show. We’d also like to thank our wonderful sponsors, Google, InVision and Intercom for their support in making this event happen.
We kicked off on Monday with Product Strategy - our four stellar speakers gave tips and techniques to get the most from your product teams, prioritise and plan effectively, and achieve consistently great outcomes.
Melissa Perri, The Secret Weapon To Finding Focus
Josh Seiden, Outcomes Over Output
John Cutler, Healing The Designer/Product Manager Divide
Day Two was all about Research, an area with particular relevance in this era as we increasingly move our work online. Remote research techniques aren’t new, but now we’re reliant on them, how do we make them even better? Our speakers were on hand to share their learnings and case studies.
Kelly Goto, Fieldwork From Home
Our third day brought together experts in Service Design who explored creating simpler experiences across fast-moving organisations and embedding behaviour change and scale service-design thinking. They shared stories from their experience as well as actionable tools and insights.
Marc Stickdorn, 20 Tips - How To Embed And Scale Service Design In Organisations
Akil Benjamin, AK Experiments
Dr Sarah Drummond, Full Stack Service Design
Day four was curated by ex-Clearleftie Rachel McConnell and was all about Content Strategy. Whether you're a designer, team lead, product owner or content expert, if you are interested in taking your content to the next level, these talks and discussions are for you! The Content Strategy day brought together world-class content designers and strategists to show how they create impact, integrate content into the design process, and scale the role of content. It’s worth saying we were so sad not to be able to hold Content Design in 2020 (it would have been on the date we held SofaConf) and although we couldn’t bring together the brilliant line up we had in store, it was great to be able to bring these three incredible content experts together with Rachel at SofaConf.
Jonathon Colman, How We Destroyed Content Design
Kristina Halvorson, In conversation with Kristina Halvorson
Our fifth and final day focussed on Interaction Design. Whether you’re creating new experiences, or optimising existing ones, you’ll find great tools and insights from these talks and discussions as our speakers share their advice for problem-solving, testing, and effective design.
Ross Chapman, Remote Sprints
Simeon Wishlade, How To Lose Less In AB Testing
Lex Roman, Practicing Growth Design
We shared some of our favourite talks curated from past conferences which we thought would be interesting and relevant. These included Director of User Experience Design at Google Magaret Lee’s talk from 2018 ‘Insights from a Reluctant Leader’. And Farai Madzima, UX Lead at Shopify talk from 2019 ‘Cultural Bias in Design(ers)’.
Some of our speakers across the event joined us to answer a few questions about themselves, their role and their talk topic before the event which you can read on Medium.
SofaConf wasn’t all talks, we also had social sessions, entertainment and some yoga classes from the lovely Jeff Phenix especially designed to help counteract the effects of sitting at a desk all day long. We’ve shared his two short classes, one which is designed to be done seated and the other more of a vinyasa flow class.
Finally, we have had all these films closed captioned as part of our ongoing commitment to improve the accessibility of our events.
We hope you enjoy the content from SofaConf, we are currently plotting and planning our next online event so do join our mailing list if you'd like more information.