We're changing confidence in three ways

// Delivering authentic confidence training and consultancy

“I left having had a physical transformation; I was really fidgety and nervous on arrival and you quickly calmed my nerves. I loved the whole format. I’ll never forget it.” – Laura Boardman, Founder of Outdraw

// Creating opportunities and skills for women and marginalised groups 

“In less than two hours Lauren literally transformed our teams from nervous, anxious speakers into confident pitchers! upfront was by far the best workshop of our entire accelerator programme and I can’t recommend it highly enough. I’ve signed up for their next workshop myself!” – Priya Ghai, Programme Manager at Fearless Futures Gender Accelerator

// Providing a new and easy way for new voices to experience the stage and confidence for the first time

“Being upfront was a powerful, emotional experience. Having no pressure to speak allowed me to really feel the anxiety and nervousness that I suppress when I speak. It was a chance to just “be” in a foreign, uncomfortable place without any pressure to perform or impress.” – Katie Crepeau, Business Strategy & Communications for Creative Professionals Consultant


The upfront approach

How it works

Sharing your power and your stage 

The upfront couch bridges the gap between audience and speaker. It sits onstage, facing the audience and is a place for aspiring public speakers to experience the feeling of being onstage without the pressure of performance.

Those who sit upfront don’t say any more than any other audience member would, therefore it won’t affect the content or the timing of the talk being delivered in any way. Anyone who sits upfront will be supported by the upfront team on their public speaking journey. By sitting on the upfront couch you are 30% more likely to speak at an event yourself one day.

The upfront approach

The couch is only a small part of what we do. People who sit on our couches around the world follow up by attending our workshops or inviting us to come and work with their teams. They then go on to give talks themselves where they share their stage and their power and so it continues. We are here to change confidence.


upfront is a global movement dedicated to changing confidence

The end of all male panels

We won’t stop until there is an upfront couch, championing diversity on every conference stage in the world. With our current trajectory, by 2018 over 500 people, all with their own public speaking ambitions, will have sat upfront. We want to give as many people the opportunity to sit upfront as possible, having already sent the upfront couch around the UK and beyond to over a dozen conferences this year, and with many more conferences signed up in the future, we are building an incredibly diverse community of aspiring speakers and conference organisers.

The upfront platform

upfront aims to provide you with knowledge, inspiration and a sense of community so you can find your kindest, most fearless self. We are prototyping a series of events, online and physical spaces to understand what you need this to be.

The #upfront network

Lauren Currie

Lauren Currie is the founder and director of upfront. She created upfront in response to her own personal experience of often being the only female speaker at conferences. This year Lauren was awarded an OBE for her services to design and diversity.

She is an award-winning designer and entrepreneur with a track record of building solutions that tackle problems that matter. She is the co-founder of Snook, Scotland’s first service design for social change agency. This year ELLE featured Lauren as one of 30 women under 30 changing the world and last year Management Today featured her as one of the top 30 business women under 30 in the UK. She is based in London and is Head of Design at Good Lab.

Joel Phillimore

Joel Phillimore is an actor, known for The Halcyon, Casualty  and Les Misérables.

He brings expertise on how to utilise body, breath and voice to everyone #upfront works with. He teaches practical exercises combating nerves to enhance the speaker’s vocal ability to inspire others.

Suha Al-Khayyat

Suha is the Director of Little Fish Theatre who work in partnership with local communities to deliver a wide range of ground-breaking programmes.

Suha brings expertise on how to utilise body, breath and voice to everyone upfront works with. She teaches people how to be more confident in professional environments.

Neusha Milanian

A comedy writer and performer, Neusha recently appeared as the lead in black comedy Trying at the New Diorama. She co-wrote, produced and performed in the comedy short film Bali which was nominated for ‘Best Comedy’ at the London Short Film Festival 2016.

Neusha brings expertise on how to utilise body, breath and voice to everyone upfront works with.

Lisa Lindström

Lisa is the CEO and Founder of Doberman and is a critical friend to upfront.

Alice Harvey

Alice is our upfront Associate and a big believer in giving people the chance to have their story heard. She helps manage upfront events and communications. She currently works as a User Experience Researcher at Good Innovation.

Bethan Harris

Bethan is a lead facilitator upfront. She is the co-founder of WeAreEurope and Shevotes, two networks that have inspired participation in politics amongst youth, women and invisible communities across Europe. Bethan is CEO of Collectively and is currently on a residency at Pervasive Media Studio at Watershed.

Natalie Songer

Natalie is a theatre maker based in the East of England. She is currently studying an MA in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy at Goldsmiths College, University of London. She has worked variously as a director, writer, producer and facilitator with the New Wolsey Theatre, Eastern Angles, Mercury Theatre, Battersea Arts Centre and more. Natalie trained as an actor at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.


Be #upfront

We want every conference in the world to openly support diversity and equality by being #upfront. This is where you come in...

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Yes Please

Let's talk about what we can do together...

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