Web Directions Culture 2017 Creating better teams

Sydney8th November 2017

Creating better teams and workplace cultures

What is Web Directions Culture?

Running in conjunction with our annual, highly regarded Summit conference, Culture aims to help you build, nurture and get the most from your design and engineering teams.

From hiring to leading, communicating and providing feedback, creating inclusive high performing teams benefits your employees and your organisation.

In this hands-on day, we'll hear from and work with experts deeply experienced in creating great cultures. You'll not just listen, but discuss, workshop and role-play ideas, techniques and scenarios, and leave with a new set of ideas and approaches to getting the most from your teams.

speakers and audience

Who's it for?

Culture is for those helping create team and organisational culture: design and engineering leaders, HR and Culture professionals, Learning and Development Managers. It all takes place in an intimate environment of like-minded professionals with similar challenges and goals.

Web Directions Summit

Culture is part of Web Directions Summit, running the day before the main two day, two track conference for your whole digital team. Come to all three days to both develop your leadership capabilities, and to keep up to speed with the latest development in your field. In fact, we have a special offer to make that even better value.

Team offer

Send a team of eight or more to Summit and you'll receive a complimentary place at Culture. Simple book eight or more attendees to Summit, and we'll get in touch for details as to who'll be attending Web Directions Culture.

Culture Program

What happens on the day?

Culture is not simply a day of lectures. Each session is structured to help you develop your understanding, enquire of the experts, role play and explore techniques, share your experience with your peers, and learn from them around a specific aspect of creating and nurturing team and organisational culture.

We've deliberately limited numbers to ensure the greatest opportunity for participants to connect with one another, and our invited experts. It's a day for minimum screen time, and maximum connection and communication.

Following on from our highly successful Code Leaders conference, each session has a single focus, is guided by deeply experienced experts, and provides the opportunity to discuss these issues and share experiences with your peers, as well as giving practical experience through role-playing and other exercises.

During the day, you'll be seated with a group of fellow participants with a balance of experience and roles. Each table will have a facilitator, someone with significant industry experience, and will have the opportunity to put questions to our expert speakers. Throughout the day there'll be the opportunity for every participant to develop their leadership abilities by facilitating post-briefing discussion among your group.


Opening Keynote

We're privileged to have the Head of Diversity and Inclusion at Atlassian, Aubrey Blanche, open the day and give some insights into Atlassian's efforts toward increasing diversity at every level of their organisation.

Aubrey Blanche

Aubrey Blanche Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion, Atlassian

Aubrey Blanche is the Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Atlassian. There, she works with teams across the business to provide greater opportunities for everyone to join Atlassian and do the best work of their lives there. Her work spans the talent lifecycle from increasing access to technical education for underrepresented minorities through recruiting, retention, and advancement of all Atlassians.

She relies heavily on empirical social science in her work, and has developed a new team-level paradigm for external diversity reporting. She believes that leading with empathy is the key to driving meaningful, sustainable change and creating highly effective teams.

Session 1: Workplace Culture

Healthy workplace cultures are the foundation for everything else. From hiring to communication, first we need to get this right. In this session, we'll address the broad issue of how we develop inclusive, healthy high performance cultures. Places where people will not only want to come and work, but will want to stay and contribute long term. And to spread the word far and wide about what a great place it is to work at.

In an environment where the competition for talent across the board is intense, and extremely expensive, we'll learn how to not only keep the people you have, but help them grow.

Brian Terlson

Elle Meredith Founder, Blackmill

Elle is a full stack web developer with more than ten years experience writing Ruby and Rails. Currently, she is a consultant at Blackmill.

Before Blackmill, she was a Development Director in the New York City office of thoughtbot.

In addition to building teams herself at organisations large and small, she's helped start and develop communities and run Rails Camps around the world.

Session 2: Communication and Feedback

Better communication makes for better, healthier teams and better performance. And in workplaces, communication can sometimes be challenging. Providing feedback to team members, which of necessity won't always be entirely positive can be difficult, but is at times essential. And equally essential is the ability to receive healthy feedback.

In this session we'll work with Amélie Lamont, a Design Lead at The New York Times, to develop the ability to both provide and accept fearless feedback.

Amélie Lamont

Amélie Lamont Design Lead New York Times

Amélie Lamont is a product design lead and writer based in Brooklyn, NY, currently employed at The New York Times. Her current projects include Good for PoC, and The Guide to Allyship.

In her writing, she explores the intersection of design, tech, womanhood, anthropology, culture, and race.

Session 3: Hiring

Building and growing effective teams starts with hiring the right people and incorporating them into your organisation. But the entire hiring process, largely unchanged in decades, is increasingly recognised as not optimised for creating diverse inclusive teams.

From job descriptions to assessing candidate capabilities, in this session we'll look at the entire hiring process, addressing how each aspect of the process can be improved.

Lachlan Hardy

Lachlan Hardy Founder Blackmill

Currently at Blackmill, an engineering practice consultancy focused on deliberate development, over nearly two decades Lachlan has worked at GitHub, Atlassian, Microsoft and Bigpond.

Lachlan has worked extensively with companies to help them re-engineer their hiring process.

Choose the right conference pass

3 Day Summit Pass

Combine Culture with the following day's Web Directions Summit Silver ticket and save $400.

  • Culture November 8

  • Summit November 9 & 10

  • $1,699 Until 20 Oct.
  • $1,799 Standard

Culture Conference

  • Culture November 8

  • $799 until 20 Oct.
  • $899 Standard

Find the conference pass for you

Culture Conference

  • Web Directions Culture November 8

  • $799 until 20 Oct.
  • $899 Standard

Register Now!

3 Day Summit Pass

Combine Culture with the following day's Web Directions Summit Silver ticket and save hundreds.

  • Culture November 8

  • Summit November 9 & 10

  • $1,699 Until 20 Oct.
  • $1,799 Standard

Register Now!

Our venue

Web Directions Culture 2017 will be held at

Mercure Hotel
818-820 George St,
Ultimo NSW 2007

Getting there:

Mercure Hotel is right by Central Station, and many Sydney Bus services and Light rail.


The Mercure has great, excellent value rooms and is a 10-15 minute walk, or one train stop from Australian Technology Park, the venue for Web Directions Summit.

Praise for past Web Directions events

Phil Whitehouse
Web Directions is the must-attend event of the year for anyone serious about web development.

Phil Whitehouse,
Innovation Lead DigitasLBi

Ethan Marcotte
I’ve been admiring the Web Directions events for years, and was honored to be part… What a fantastic event!

Ethan Marcotte,
inventor "responsive Web design"

Dave Greiner
Out of any conference, Web Directions is far and away our favourite

Dave Greiner,
founder Campaign Monitor

About Us

The technology world is full of hype and fads (as well as the real next thing). The challenge is deciding what's hype, and what's reality. That's where we come in. We spend our life thinking about what's happening, and what's coming next. And what's not worth your time now, or maybe ever.

Web Directions founder John Allsopp's ideas have been acknowledged as the foundation for Responsive Web Design, and helped pave the way for the web fonts revolution and Typekit. Our conferences have seen the announcement to the world of such key ideas as The New Aesthetic (2012), Object Oriented CSS (2009) and Progressive Web Apps (2015).

We promise attending one of our events will leave you significantly better versed in the challenges you face day to day, and in solutions for addressing them.

In 2017, we've organised Respond in Sydney and Melbourne, Transform in Canberra, and will be holding Code and Code Leaders in Melbourne, AI, Careers and Web Directions Summit in Sydney.

vignettes form our events, social, speakers and more. Includes Hannah Donovan skylarking.

John Allsopp

John Allsopp has been working on the Web for over 20 years. He's been responsible for innovative developer tools such as Style Master, X-Ray and many more. He's spoken at numerous conferences around the World and delivered dozens of workshops in that time as well.

His writing includes two books, including Developing With Web Standards and countless articles and tutorials in print and online publications.

His "A Dao of Web Design" published in 2000 is cited by Ethan Marcotte as a key influence in the development of Responsive Web Design, who's rightly acclaimed article in 2010 begins by quoting John in detail, and by Jeremy Keith as "a manifesto for anyone working on the Web".

Code of Conduct

For over a decade, we've worked hard to create inclusive, fun, inspring and safe events for the Web Industry.

As part of our commitment to these values, we've adopted a code of conduct for all involved: ourselves, our speakers, our partners and our audience.

If you have any concern or feedback, please don't hesitate to contact us.