Tag Archives: dareconf

Learn practices for building trust in groups: my new gift-economy-style evening course

I’m leading a new evening course where people learn to create safe spaces using techniques from facilitation, conflict resolution, and improvisational theatre. Instead of charging a fee, I’m offering the course “gift economy” style.  Continue reading Learn practices for building trust in groups: my new gift-economy-style evening course

Take part in #dareconf—the people skills conference—from anywhere

Gabriel Smy at #dareconf mini
Gabriel Smy at #dareconf mini

It’s almost a year since I organised #dareconf, the people skills conference. We’re back for a second year on 22-23 September, redesigned from the ground up—backstory if you’re interested—and I’m excited to show you the results. The pitch is “skills to help you work together”:  Continue reading Take part in #dareconf—the people skills conference—from anywhere

Telling people what you need is scary

Jonathan Kahn opens #dareconf mini
Photo: Paul Clarke

Just over a year ago I announced an open call for speakers for the first Dare Conference with the strapline, “let’s be brave together.” It was about taking risks, being vulnerable, and becoming an agent of change. I wanted speakers to share their vulnerability on stage instead of presenting the tidy success stories you normally see at conferences. I called it the “hard part” of digital work. My note on the submission form said, “tell us how you failed.” Reading that now, I cringe.

Continue reading Telling people what you need is scary

Break out of the loop of insecurity by experiencing a safe space

Paul Hagan presenting at DareConf 2013

“I don’t know why I bother. You guys just don’t get it.”

I never said it to their faces, but I might as well have done. I was a web developer for a small design agency who did print work: annual reports, campaigns, branding. They made good money by competing on price for design and marking up production, where clients didn’t notice it. Now they wanted to sell web design in the same way, and the internet was undermining their business model.

They never seemed to listen to me enough. I thought they were dinosaurs. Why couldn’t they see the right way to do things? Why were they always promising the world in pitches? And why did they keep telling me my “communication style” was a problem? (That seemed like an excuse to reject my obviously superior ideas.)

Continue reading Break out of the loop of insecurity by experiencing a safe space

To change anything you need self-compassion (what we learned at #dareconf)

Jonathan Kahn Opening the Dare Conference

It’s a month since I organised the first Dare Conference about people skills for digital workers (videos, photos, write-ups). As I tweeted at the time, I’ve never made anything I’m as proud of. Although I lost a large amount of money on the event (backstory), most of our choices paid off:

  • People were moved by the talks, saying they’d never seen this level of honesty on stage.
  • People said they’d never felt this comfortable at a conference nor met so many people they want to stay in touch with.
  • Online we had several thousand livestream views and 75k photo views.
  • Some people said #dareconf changed their lives.

Continue reading To change anything you need self-compassion (what we learned at #dareconf)

Watch Dare Conference videos and donate for next year

It’s a week after Dare Conference, and I’m still feeling overwhelmed. Three days, 28 speakers, 100 attendees, 8 countries. The strap line is, “people skills for digital workers.” We talked about change, culture, courage, vulnerability, failure, compassion, success… and people were honest in a way I’ve never seen before. #dareconf changed people:

And it can change you too. We’re posting video of the entire event—main stage talks in HD video, breakout stage talks as audio and slides—and we’re asking you to donate £20 to recoup costs so we can return next year. (So far we’ve posted 5 talks from day 1, over 3 hours of content. More soon.)

You can help us make this community sustainable by spreading the word: blog about it, email your friends and colleagues, share the link on social media. And let me know how you respond to the videos. Thank you.