Kimi Gilbert is the Managing Partner of The Future Factory, a 50-person London-based business development consultancy working with some of the world’s leading agencies, from independents to global networks. She has trained hundreds of agencies in various aspects of new business, delivering sessions for trade associations such as the Design Business Association. Kimi is a mentor on the Mayor of London’s Business Growth Programme, where she advises creative businesses on their growth strategy. Born in South Korea and raised in the US, Kimi lived in Germany and Austria before moving to the UK to do a Master’s in Human Rights and start her career in the agency world.
Kevin founded Plan in 2004. Before this, he was a director at product design consultancy Seymourpowell, where he set up one of the first dedicated design strategy teams in Europe. His clients have included: Airbus, Carl Zeiss, Coca Cola, Deutsche Telekom, Ford, HP, Hyundai, Lenovo, Logitech, Mars, McLaren, Nokia, Microsoft, Orange, O2, P&G, Samsung, Shell, Tefal, Toyota, Unilever, Virgin Voyages, Vodafone and Yamaha.
Kevin is never short of an opinion or three, with a background spanning design, engineering, marketing, and social forecasting. Kevin writes, speaks, and chairs conferences on innovation, technology, and design. His writing has appeared in publications including The Wall St Journal, The Daily Telegraph, Fast Company, Design Management Review, Unherd and Blueprint.
A bold thinker and servant leader shaping the future of services and service organizations . Based in Chicago and London, Robert Bau is a Swedish innovation & design leader with deep expertise in service innovation, service design, and strategic UX. Robert tackles complex challenges and accelerates company-wide innovation efforts in five ways: strategic guidance, creative direction, co-creation, coaching, and compassion. Having lived and worked in six countries on two continents, most recently as Service Design Director at Fjord, Chicago he brings cross-cultural sensitivity and a global mindset to the table.
About Debrah Smith &
Debrah Smith and Richard Village have worked together since 2005, and in 2011 took the plunge and founded the Smith&+Village, a strategic and creative agency with big ambitions but a tiny business structure. Debrah & Richard always run a small tight team, within the framework of a big, collaborative network. Smith&+ Village has never had a studio, and have always worked as a remote team for clients including Harvey Nichols, Harrods, Booths and Dishoom.
Debrah lives among the wines of South-West France and Richard, who is UK based, speaks five languages.
Matthew Brown is a London-based retail futurist, and founder of Echochamber, a specialist creative retail intelligence agency, with a global client base of retailers, developers and FMCG brands.
Matthew travels the world tracking retail innovation and evolving consumer trends in order to provide creative and strategic insight for clients across all retail sectors, to empower them to harness evolving global consumer and retail trends for business development and innovation.
Echochamber’s research enables them to energise and inspire clients with new possibilities and work closely with retailers through to global brands such as Nike and IKEA, FMCGs such as Unilever and Johnson & Johnson, as well as leading global shopping mall developers.
echochamber.com is a free online magazine of global retail innovation.
As co-founder and CEO of Cheskin, a firm that pioneered design research in Silicon Valley, Christopher and her partners had ringside seats to unrivalled feats of creation, innovation, reinvention, and the power of design. Her ability to create simple explanations of complex human behaviour and to translate those insights into effective design and development strategies attracted clients from both technology and consumer goods companies, including Microsoft, Apple, Pepsi, Levis, Ford and more.
Christopher has led teams exploring topics like how trends move through the teen population, how music relates to mood, the history of residential architectural styles, the power of play, the cultural and behavioral differences of girls and boys, the emerging culture of “cool” in China, the development of trust online, and the meaning of color around the globe—to name just a few.
She and her partners sold Cheskin in 2007, and walked away with their sanity mostly intact. Christopher is a co-author of Rise of the DEO: Leadership by Design and China’s New Culture of Cool, and teaches design leadership and strategy at Stanford University’s Continuing Studies Program.
Based in Berlin, Kim Muller is Experience Design Director at McKinsey Digital and passionate about human-centered design, working to solve problems by combining strategic insights with Design Thinking to create and shape services, experiences and digital products. Kim delivers business value through design by helping companies build stronger design capabilities. She drives digital transformations in B2C and B2B across regions – in Europe, the US, Middle East and Asia.
Before joining McKinsey & Company Kim worked across digital agencies, design studios and start-ups within cross-functional teams.
Russell Beck is widely acknowledged as a thought leader across all aspects of talent management and people strategy; from the future of work, attraction, engagement and retention to belonging, purpose, meaning and individual productivity. He couples a research-driven approach to people and work for inspirational and thought provoking insights to unlocking potential and productivity. Russell challenges, inspires and motivates people to move quicker and further than they previously thought possible.
In his role as Director of Inspiration at Think Make Do, Russell connects dots in an informative way to help organisations take tangible actions to unlock the potential and productivity of their most expensive and most important asset, their people. He has consulted and supported boards and leadership teams of companies of all sizes – FTSE100, Fortune500, SMEs – and across many sectors including technology, engineering, pharma, retail, finance and hospitality.
Astrid Stavro is an internationally-renowned graphic designer with a reputation for strong concept-driven design which is succinct, emotionally engaging, with the emphasis placed on exquisite typography and craft. She joined Pentagram as a partner in 2018.
Her clients span the cultural and commercial worlds, and her work encompasses brand identity, editorial, and exhibition design, as well as wayfinding systems and packaging. As Art Director, she led the celebrated redesign of the London-based arts and culture magazine Elephant, and also created the identity for the Barcelona Design Museum and the menswear clothing label Jijibaba. Recent clients include Tate, Phaidon, Camper, McKinsey & Company, AB InBev, Fedrigoni, Port magazine, Laurence King Publishing, Mahou San Miguel, the Miró Foundation, and Wallpaper*.
Born in Trieste, Italy, Stavro speaks five languages and has lived in Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, the United States and the UK. She studied graphic design at Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design (BA) and the Royal College of Art (MA), and directed her own studio in Barcelona for ten years, before co-founding the brand and design consultancy Atlas with Pablo Martín in 2013.
Her work has received over 150 international awards and Stavro has been invited to chair and judge numerous international design competitions and to speak at conferences around the world. Passionate about design education, she has taught at Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design and is currently a Visiting Lecturer at the Royal College of Art.
Blair Enns is on a mission to change the way creative services are bought and sold the world over. He is the founder of Win Without Pitching, the sales training and coaching organisation for creative professionals, and the author of two books on selling and pricing for creatives.
His Win Without Pitching Manifesto, published in 2010, has sold over 30,000 copies and launched a revolution in how creative and marketing firms approach developing new business development.
Pricing Creativity: A Guide to Profit Beyond the Billable Hour, published in 2018, is a comprehensive guide to value-based pricing for creative firms is available in multiple formats, only at pricingcreativity.com
Blair also hosts, along with David C. Baker, the podcast 2Bobs: Conversations on the Art of Creative Entrepreneurship.
Blair lives in the remote mountain village of Kaslo, British Columbia, Canada. He can be found online at winwithoutpitching.com and @blairenns on Twitter and LinkedIn.
Director of CEO Branding at Liquid Agency and author of THE BRAND GAP, THE BRAND FLIP, ZAG
Marty Neumeier is an author, designer, and brand adviser whose mission is to bring the principles and processes of design to business. His series of "whiteboard" books includes ZAG, named one of the "top hundred business books of all time," and THE DESIGNFUL COMPANY, a bestselling guide to nonstop innovation. An online presentation of his first book, THE BRAND GAP, has been viewed more than 22 million times since 2003. A sequel, THE BRAND FLIP, lays out a new process for building brands in the age of social media and customer dominance. His most recent book, SCRAMBLE, is a "business thriller" about how to build a brand quickly with a new process called agile strategy. In 1996, Neumeier founded Critique magazine, the first journal about design thinking. He has worked closely with innovative companies such as Apple, Netscape, Sun Microsystems, HP, Adobe, Google, and Microsoft to help advance their brands and cultures. Today he serves as Director of Transformation for Liquid Agency in Silicon Valley, and travels extensively as a workshop leader and speaker on the topics of design, brand, and innovation.
Emily Cohen has been honored to consult and work with many leading design firms and, through these experiences, she has developed, tested, and curated key business insights and strategies that have helped these firms become more effective, profitable, and fun to work at. Emily conducts business planning retreats and provides confidential, best-practice insights and advice on staff, client, and process-management strategies. She loves sharing her expertise through speaking engagements, guest posts, her Skillshare class, Lynda.com course*, webinars, industry activism, and, most recently, in her new business book for creatives, Brutally Honest: No-bullshit business strategies to evolve your creative business. Emily Cohen is also fast-talker, a designer by degree, an avid reader, a trend-spotter, a connector, and her client’s advocate.
Christina brings a decade of branding and strategic mastery to the table. Having worked both client and agency side, Christina has an enviable perspective of strategic leadership and operational implementation.
At Kontrapunkt Christina helps businesses and organisations through big transformative projects and the uncertainties these changes bring.
Before joining Kontrapunkt in Denmark, Christina honed her skills as a Senior Brand Strategist at the leading Telco company, TDC Group, and as a strategic planner at several leading advertising agencies, including Ogilvy and TBWA.
Craig is Senior Director of Design Strategy at Publicis Sapient. In this role, he combines evidence-led customer insight, commercial rigour and technical opportunity to define differentiated digital propositions. He was first and founding member of AKQA’s Strategy Department in 1998, and Director of Strategy in London, San Francisco and New York until 2008, shaping the discipline of digital strategy from its inception. He was Managing Director at EHS 4D (now Havas Helia) for two years, and then Managing Director at the Digital Consultancy Progenit for 5 years, helping organisations shape and deliver their digital strategy. Prior to joining Publicis Sapient he was founder of the start-up rtobjects – delivering cinematic interactive visuals to everyone everywhere. He is also an Intellectual Historian and an editor for The Clarendon Edition of the Works of John Locke at the Oxford University Press.
Conn is respected as one of South Africas top creative thinkers having won gold awards at all the major creative and design festivals around the world as well as performing the role of Creative Director of the World Design Capital Cape Town 2014 after beating cancer in 2013. Conn consults as a Creative and Purpose Strategist for brands, organisations and individuals facing seemingly insurmountable challenges.
As Chief Executive of the UK Design Business Association, Deborah works with the industry to champion the tangible and measurable impact of design in business and society.
She is particularly interested in developing best business practice for creative firms and, raising the profile of design and its capability for wealth creation in business.
Her passion for design as a strategic tool that boardrooms have been slow to realise, and experience of the UK’s diverse and competitive design sector, have led to a number of roles on the advisory boards of business, government and other design organisations.
For more than twenty-five years, Michael Jager, Vermont’s first awarded AIGA Design Fellow, has been creating and collaborating with brands, driven by the idea that design distinction has the ability to positively advance meaningful ideas and their value in the world. His groundbreaking work with JDK Design continues with Solidarity of Unbridled Labour, a studio that conceptualizes and realizes ideas that help guide and create culture and positive change within it. Guided by Ezra Pound’s simply but elegantly stated principle, “Make it new,” his collaborative output for a multitude of today’s most recognizable and relevant brands—including Burton Snowboards, Microsoft’s Xbox, Nike, CCM, Levi’s, Phish, MTV, Virgin, Lululemon, Yara, Tomra, Seventh Generation, and Patagonia—is recognized worldwide. Through Solidarity’s own Living Brand™ brand-design process and incubation platform, Michael has helped create unique home, sport, and lifestyle brands, such as Mamava and Maglianero. He is also the cofounder of the Karma Bird House, a creative-economy coworking space now home to more than 60 inspiring entrepreneurial entities. Michael lives and creates in Burlington, Vermont, USA.
Based in Brussels, though active in all studios, Thierry is both Base founding partner & creative director. From projects ranging from visual identities to ad campaigns, Thierry imparts a philosophy of graphic and conceptual simplicity that emphasizes concise communication. “Don’t design for designers. Design for people” is one of his mottos. Thierry believes in the power of words in design, creative autonomy, teamwork and pleasure through ever-changing processes. Thierry has led landmark Base projects including MoMA, Maison Michel, San Francisco Art Institute, Dandoy, BeTV, Bozar, Hotel Missoni, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Haus der Kunst, Maison Dandoy, Delvaux, The Olympic Museum and La Monnaie Opera. He is also the author the renowned “5-minute poster series”, creating 50 typographic works, each dedicated to a short bit of wisdom on design. Thierry is professor and regular speaker at design and branding conferences around the world.
Brand creator and business coach Rhonda
Page has 30 years experience building global brands for companies like Kraft and Coca-Cola. She has a unique talent for seeing how a business can evolve from where it is into something new and different that has the potential for greater revenue and increased
leverage. She's a speaker and published author and has been coaching creative entrepreneurs all over the world since 2010.
With more than 15 years of design-industry experience, Kwame has helped some of the world’s top-performing companies push the boundaries of design, creating memorable products and services that matter. He is passionate about the business-led applications of design thinking, especially for unlocking customer insights and creating experiences that boost engagement and drive growth.
A thought leader in the design community, Kwame has spoken about digital transformation, customer-experience design, and product development at the Design Management Institute, the Harvard Business Review Design Thinking Conference, the NOAH Conference, and other industry forums.
Jonathan is the founder of Up to the Light, a consultancy that advises creative agencies on positioning and strategy, and all aspects of business improvement and growth, challenging some of the
ingrained assumptions that exist in our industry and providing effective, insight-led
advice Jonathan’s senior roles have included Business Development Director of Fitch, the
global brand design group, and New Business Director of Havas EHS (now Havas
Helia), one of Europe's largest agency networks.
Jonathan is a founder member of the Design Business Association’s Experts Register
and is a frequent conference speaker and trade press contributor.
About Imogen Pudduck & Carla Cringle
Carla and Imogen are founders of FizzPopBANG, a Brand Employee Engagement Agency. In their previous roles as Head of HR and Head of Brand at Red Bull, they both discovered a passion for building strong, high performing teams through a vibrant culture and found a magic formula to achieve this.
Charlie is a Senior Strategy Consultant working in the Futures Practice at Kantar Consulting. Her experience spans strategy and innovation consulting for a number of sectors, from FMCG to Automotive and Financial Services. As part of the Futures Practice, Charlie uses Futures methodologies to challenge clients to take an ‘outside-in’ perspective, take a longer view of time, and connect dots to see a richer, consolidated view of change – in order to plan effectively for the future.
Kevin is founder of London based product strategy consultancy called Plan, which specialises in mobility and consumer technology. His clients include: Deutsche Telecom, Carl Zeiss, Ford, HP, Lenovo, Microsoft, Samsung, Toyota, and Yamaha.
He writes, speaks, and chairs conferences on innovation, and society; and has been published in: The Wall Street Journal, The Telegraph, FastCompany, Unherd, Icon and The Design Management Review.
Chiara Aliotta is an Italian award-winning designer with many years of experience as a graphic designer, art director and brand consultant. Her work is creative, emotionally involving and detail-obsessed. She has created innovative designs for brands like Vodafone, Nivea, NH Hotel and many others and is an AWWWARDS jury member.
About Liza Enebeis & Maartje Wensing
Liza is directly involved with all main projects such as the
identity for the Royal Cabinet of Paintings Mauritshuis,
Amsterdam Sinfonietta and NGO Alzheimer Nederland.
Her ‘extra curricular’ activities include: Letters to LoveLiza –
an ‘agony aunt’ column where Liza dispenses wit and advice
to designers all over the world; Design Rhymes – a series of
poems about design; Books LoveLiza – an ongoing catalogue
of images and reviews inspired by her bibliophilic tendencies;
and Typeradio.org – a typography and design podcast.
With a father that was a graphic designer, Maartje alway knew what she wanted to do. After her study as a graphic designer at the Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam, she worked as a designer for a few years, before finding her real passion and talent in all things surrounding design; talking to clients, organizing, presenting, planning, working with designers. She learned the tricks of the trade at Fabrique (a Dutch online agency) and later at SILO (Dutch branding studio). At Studio Dumbar she works on large scale rebranding projects such as Transavia, the Dutch airline, and VBMS, the subsea power cable installation company.
Blair Enns is the sand in the free pitching machine. Through his sales training program for creative professionals, Win Without Pitching, he is on a mission to change the way creative services are bought and sold the world over. He is the author of ‘The Win Without Pitching Manifesto’ (Rockbench, 2010) and ‘Pricing Creativity: A Guide to Profit Beyond The Billable Hour’ (Rockbench, Q3 2017).
A founding partner and Executive Creative Director at LOVE, a Manchester based, design-led multi-disciplinary agency, David has over 26 years of industry experience working with global brands across a broad range of design-centric projects, spanning brand experience spaces, packaging, innovation, advertising and brand design. LOVE has won just about every design award going, including several D&AD pencils, all of which sit in a stolen Tesco’s shopping trolley in LOVE’s studio.
Katharine is part of the Design Leadership Team that has re-defined innovation culture within Logitech, bringing ‘Design- Thinking’ to the product development process, leading a team of material design specialists across Europe, US and Asia. With over 16 years of industrial experience, Katharine’s specialism lies in the development of creative product strategies, blending client brand values, consumer trend foresight and carefully considered use of materials to deliver ID and UX / UI concepts and insights.