Here’s everything you need to know about The Big Yak, the unconference for communicators on Saturday 9 June 2018.

It’s being hosted by The IC Crowd. Do Tweet us @theICcrowd if you’ve got a query we’ve not covered.

What’s The IC Crowd?
The IC Crowd is a community and a place for people to connect and communicate. It’s the brainchild of Comms professionals Rachel MillerJenni Field and Dana Leeson.

We launched the crowd in September 2012 and you can find out more about us on the team page of our website and @theICcrowd on Twitter.

What is The Big Yak?
The Big Yak unconference from The IC Crowd connects in-house and independent communicators face-to-face so they can learn and network. To yak is a colloquial way of saying to talk.

It has been designed by and for professional communicators. This is the fourth time The Big Yak has taken place, as we gathered comms pros in 2013, 2014 and 2016.


We’re proud to be a different type of event and offer in-house practitioners the chance to shape the agenda on the day (which is what an unconference means) and get help and advice from their peers.

Trust us, you’ll love it!

Feedback from delegates over the years means we know what works and what doesn’t, so we’ve made a few changes for 2018.

Who can attend?
In-house internal communicators and independent practitioners are welcome to come to The Big Yak.

This is an event to share learning and experience with other like-minded professionals. Based on feedback, only agencies who are sponsoring are able to attend. As ever, we request a no pitching, selling of services or products to other attendees as this is what makes The Big Yak unique and we’d like to keep it that way.

We will be closely monitoring the attendee list. Our lead sponsors are AB, SocialOptic and Workplace. See the sponsors page to discover our partners for this year.

Where is The Big Yak?
We know how much you loved our venue in 2016, so not only is the yak back, we’re returning to the same venue.

Etc venue in Marble Arch, London, is our home for the day and we have it exclusively, which means we can network, learn, eat and socialise in the same place.

Grab a ticket
This year we will be charging a nominal amount for tickets, which is set at £9.99. Tickets will be released at the end of March 2018. We’ll keep this page updated and also Tweet from @theICcrowd once they are available. You will be able to book via Eventbrite to save your place.


Want to know what will be discussed at The Big Yak on Saturday 9 June 2018?

So do we! As it’s an unconference, the content is decided by you, the attendees, on the day.

We’re expecting 150 in-house professional communicators to come together, shape the agenda and enjoy being together.

Our facilitator Benjamin Ellis will be guiding us through our fun-filled day. If you’ve never attended an unconference before, don’t worry, he’ll be on hand to make sure things go smoothly.

Here’s the agenda from our 2016 event – as you can see, it was set on the day:

The Big Yak agenda

Doors open at 9.30am on Saturday 9 June 2018. Breakfast will be served until 10.15am. The Big Yak will start at 10.15am and finish at 5pm. Drinks will end just before 7pm.

Thank you to our drinks sponsor Workplace for enabling us to have drinks at the end, so we can keep on yakking in the venue for a few more hours.

More information about timings can be found on the agenda page.

All food is included on the day including breakfast before The Big Yak starts. A hot lunch will be served just after midday and we’ll have a mid-afternoon break too.

If you have any dietary requirements (besides gluten-free and veggie options) please let us know.


Dress code
We want you to feel comfortable, so do come in jeans and trainers or whatever you prefer. It is a Saturday after all.

Our swag bags are back by popular demand. Look out for yours when you arrive as they include goodies from our fantastic sponsors, so you can find out more about them.

Make some noise
Do Tweet on the day using #thebigyak and @theICcrowd.

The venue will have free wifi and there are plenty of plug points – don’t forget your chargers. See the reviews page of this website to discover what it’s like to attend The Big Yak. We’d love you to join us.

The Big Yak Tweet


Comms Clinic with AB

Book your consultancy session with one of our lead sponsors, AB.

ABPick the brains of two experienced consultants for free. Katie Macaulay and Mario Theodorou, from the communications agency AB, are offering 15-minute sessions during The Big Yak to address any burning communications issue, from the strategic to the tactical. Book your slot anytime between 10am to 4pm. Passionate, award-wining communicators, Mario and Katie, will bring the tea and cake – you bring the problem!   

Katie Macaulay has spent a 27-year career in employee communication. Today, Katie is managing director of AB, the UK’s longest established employee communications agencies, founded in 1964. Her book, From Cascade to Conversation, explores the future of internal communication and was the subject of a popular presentation at IABC’s World Conference in Washington last year.

Mario Theodorou is an experienced digital director and evangelist. As Head of Digital at News International – one of the UK’s oldest and biggest newspaper Groups – Mario was instrumental in helping this traditional media organisation embrace the web. Mario recently joined AB as Head of Digital to help organisations explore the benefits of digital, social and mobile technology.  

How can I book?
Look out for a link to choose your 15-minute Comms Clinic when you book your The Big Yak ticket.

Post-Yak drinks
We will be hosting networking drinks following the event and would love you to join us. They are being sponsored by Workplace. Thank you Facebook.

Do Tweet us @theICcrowd if you’ve got a query we’ve not covered on this site.