Expo Guide

This is your one-stop guide to everything you need to know about Support Driven Expo June 21-22, 2018 in Portland, Oregon.

Staying up to date on all things Expo
– Code of Conduct
– How to Expo
– How to find help
– Important times
– Meet the Speakers
– Lunch
– Session feedback
Registration and wristbands
Parties and Community Meetups
Transportation and parking
Support Bars at the Trade Show
Career UnConference at the Career Fair
Venue Map
Campus Map
Area Map

Staying up to date on all things Expo

Mobile app
Expo has an app! Please download it to your iOS or Android mobile device now. Once you’ve downloaded the Attendify app, search “Support Driven” to find Expo. The app includes maps, the Expo schedule, speaker bios, and is the primary method we will use to communicate day-of news and updates at Expo.

The app also includes the option to star sessions you want to attend so that you can plan your Expo, the ability to provide feedback for a speaker session to help organizers and speakers know what’s going well and where we can improve, and an activity stream where you can share photos, interact with other attendees, and push messages to your social networks.

Please snap photos during Expo and post them on the app! We’ll publish a photo roundup on the Support Driven blog after the event, so be sure to share your pictures :-).

SD Expo on Slack
Prior to the event, join the #event-sd-expo channel on the Support Driven Slack to ask or answer questions and to get pumped up about Expo with other folks who will be there. Not on Slack yet? Join here.

Hashtag: #sdexpo
The official social media hashtag for Expo is #sdexpo.

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Welcome to Support Driven Expo 2018 in Portland, Oregon! We’ve got two days of great content for you, and an amazing community of people to share the experience with.

It’s important to all of us to create a safe, inclusive environment, so we’d like to point out a few key elements of the Support Driven Code of Conduct:

  • The foundation of our community comes from treating each other with respect and courtesy.
  • Be kind to others. Do not insult or put down other participants. Behave professionally.
  • Remember that harassment, sexist, or racist jokes are not appropriate for Support Driven. “Jokes” are often the culprit for Code of Conduct violations. Do not make jokes about gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion, and do not initiate inappropriate physical contact or unwelcome sexual attention.
  • Take care of each other. Even if something seems it might be inconsequential, alert Scott Tran, Andrea Badgley, or a person with a yellow wristband if you notice a potential dangerous situation, someone in distress, or violations of this code of conduct whether online or in person.

How to Expo

You don’t need to go to every talk and workshop – also, it’s not possible since there are several of them happening at the same time. Look through the schedule of events before you arrive or while you are eating or taking a break. Figure out which sessions you want to see the most and star them in the app. Spread out your time between sessions, support bar, career unconference, networking, and breaks.

Speaking of breaks – conferences are exhilarating, but can also be exhausting. Give your brain a break! Grab a quiet spot in one of the many nooks in the Pavilion, spend some time at the library next door, or take a quick walk. Come back invigorated.

Venue map
For Talk and Workshop room locations at the Viking Pavilion, see the Interactive Map on the app, or the venue map below.

Important times

Day One, Thursday, June 21

– 8:00 – 9:00 am: Registration. Coffee and water available.
– 8:15 am: Voting opens for Career UnConference discussion questions.
– 8:30 am: Welcome tour. Meet at Support Driven Table.
– 8:50 am: Opening remarks in Talk Room A.
– 9:00 am: Expo’s first sessions begin!
– 12:00 pm: Voting closes for Career UnConference.
– 12:00 – 2:00 pm: Lunch. Go out and enjoy Portland food.
– 2:00 – 5:00 pm: Career Fair and UnConference sessions.
– 4:30 pm: Meet the speakers in main arena.
– 5:00 pm: Day One is over! See you at 9:00am on Friday.

Day Two, Friday, June 22

– 8:30 am: Voting opens for Career UnConference discussion questions.
– 9:00 am: Sessions begin!
– 12:00 pm: Voting closes for Career UnConference discussion questions.
– 12:00 – 2:00 pm: Lunch. Go out and enjoy Portland food.
– 2:00 – 5:00 pm: Career Fair and UnConference sessions.
– 4:30 pm: Meet the speakers in main arena.
– 5:00 pm: Day Two is over! Closing remarks in Talk Room A.


If you need help, or to report a code of conduct violation, find someone with a yellow wristband or make your way to the registration table.

Meet the Speakers

Speakers will be available in the main room at 4:30 pm for questions and conversation. For ease in identification, speakers will wear red wristbands. Their names and photos are also in the app. Talks will not include Q&A at the end of each session.


Lunch is two hours so that you can get out and explore the amazing variety of foods Portland has to offer. See the Where to Eat page for nearby recommendations from the Portland Support Driven community.

Session Feedback

We want to know what you think of the sessions! Your input will help us know what content resonated and what we should improve on next year.

We are using the app for session feedback. This allows you to share your thoughts whenever it is convenient to you, including immediately, while everything is still fresh in your mind, or later when you remember “Oh yeah, I wanted to give feedback about that workshop.” To give feedback about a session, take these steps:

  1. Go to Schedule in the app
  2. Go to the appropriate day
  3. Find the session you’d like to give feedback on. Tap that session on your device.
  4. Tap Rate Now.
  5. Select the number of stars you’d like to give the session.
  6. Write a few words about your rating or experience with the session (optional)
  7. Choose to review anonymously if you’d like
  8. Tap Submit

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Registration and wristbands

Registration options:

  • Register early at the Welcome Party at Airbnb on Wednesday night
  • Register in the main arena at Viking Pavilion between 8 and 9 am on Thursday June 21

At the venue, registration will be at the Support Driven table in the arena floor. Look for the Support Driven banners. Volunteers at the registration table will check your name on the registration list and provide you with your Expo wristband.

Wristbands will be reversible to indicate whether you’re feeling social or need some quiet time. When you’d like to talk to others, flip your wristband so that the color shows. When you’d like some quiet time and don’t want to be approached for conversations, flip your wristband to grey.

Before initiating a conversation, please check an attendee’s wristband before approaching to respect their current interaction state. If it’s grey, look for that person again later when they’re ready to talk.

The wristbands will come in three colors: blue for attendees, red for speakers, and yellow for helpers who have Expo answers:

  • Blue: Attendee
  • Red: Speaker
  • Yellow: Expo Guide – I can help!

If you have a question about Expo (Where’s the restroom? How do I get the app?), find an Expo Guide with a yellow wristband and they’ll be able to help. Speakers will wear red wristbands for easy identification at the Meet the Speaker session at 4:30 pm each day.

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Parties and Community Meetups

Welcome Party – Wednesday evening, June 20
The night before Expo begins, join Expo attendees at Airbnb’s Portland office for a pre-Expo Welcome Party! Tour Airbnb’s offices, pick up your wristband at early registration, and enjoy food and beverages courtesy of Zendesk and PartnerHero.

Space is limited: RSVPs and IDs are required. Due to these limitations, there are two runnings of the Welcome Party: A and B.

RSVP for either Welcome Party A (6:00 – 7:30 pm) or Welcome Party B (7:30 – 8:45 pm). Airbnb tours are available at 7:15pm (A) and 8:15pm (B).

Don’t forget to bring your ID to get in the door, and we can’t wait see you there!

Address: 34 NW 1st Ave, Portland, OR 97209

Guru Launch party – Thursday June 21, 5:30 PM – 8:30 PM PDT
At the end of the first day of Expo, flex your gaming muscles at a launch party hosted by Guru. Join the fun with an evening of awesome arcading at Ground Kontrol, Portland’s premier classic arcade. Free play means no quarters weighing you down, so hit that high score as you nosh on some light snacks and jam to the beats of DJ Ambush.

Bonus* If you find the Guru team at Expo for a drink ticket, your first round is on Guru! Space is limited, so please register.

Community meetups
Hundreds of people from the Support Driven community will be coming to Expo. It’s an opportunity for folks who interact primarily online to gather in real life around common interests like food, coffee, beer, and more. Community meetups are listed on the Support Driven event calendar:

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Getting around Portland

Directions from the airport
We recommend taking the MAX light-rail into downtown Portland from Portland Interantional Airport (PDX). Tickets are available for purchase at ticket machines in the airport, and you can board the MAX Red Line from the airport station. Fare for this trip is $2.50 for an adult, and you will need to buy your ticket before boarding the train. Then follow these instructions from the TriMet Trip Planner from Portland Airport to 930 SW HALL ST:

  • Board MAX Red Line to City Center & Beaverton
  • Get off at Rose Quarter TC MAX Station
  • Walk 277 feet to Rose Quarter Transit Center
  • Board 8-Jackson Park/NE 15th to Marquam Hill via City Center
  • Get off at SW 5th & Hall
  • Walk 1/4 mile to 930 SW HALL ST, Portland

In town
Portland is built to accommodate walking, biking, and public transportation: it is very friendly to people without cars. Taxis, Ubers, and Lyfts are almost unnecessary, especially given the central location of Expo: the Viking Pavilion is downtown on Portland State University campus and is accessible by Portland’s excellent and inexpensive public transit. Transit cost is $2.50 for 2.5 hours or $5 all day. The fee includes busses and the MAX light-rail, and nearly every part of Portland is accessible via public transit. We recommend you download the Transit app or use the TriMet Trip Planner for step-by-step instructions for how to get from one place to another using Portland public transit.

Parking at venue
We recommend walking and using public transit as much as possible. Limited parking is available for the Viking Pavilion in Parking Structure 3, at 1631 SW 12th Avenue.

Pick-up and drop-off
The best place for a car, Lyft, or Uber to drop off or pick up at the venue is the corner of SW College Street and SW Park Avenue on PSU campus.

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Support Bars at the Trade Show

Trade Show sponsors work with teams across the support industry and provide tools for knowledge management, quality assurance, helpdesks, and AI, just to name a few. Similar to Apple’s Genius bar, Support Bars at Expo will give you an opportunity to engage with experts from these companies outside of a sales context: sponsors are not there to close deals or deliver sales pitches, they are there to provide knowledge and insight. They see the various ways support departments approach specific problems, and have a broad perspective for helping Expo attendees figure out an approach for your own company. For example, Help Scout will have a support bar to answer questions about live chat best practices, Statuspage is offering incident response audits, and Freshdesk is offering help on how to build a team from scratch.

Many sponsors are providing the option to book times with them so that you can choose a time that works with your personal Expo schedule. Chat about:

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Career UnConference at the Career Fair

We’re excited to offer both a Career Fair and a Career UnConference in the afternoon of each day at Expo. From seasoned support veterans to newcomers just checking support out, everyone will have a chance to find their dream job at the Expo Career Fair. Top companies will be on site to chat about what life is like on some of the best customer support teams in the world, like Abstract, Airbnb, Automattic, MailChimp, PDX Women in Tech, and Zapier.

Career UnConference
The Support Driven Community values your voice and wants to create the opportunity to dig into conversations on the topics relevant to our lived experiences, especially as they relate to career growth and diversity, equity, and inclusion. UnConference sessions will happen during the Career Fair in the afternoon on each day of Expo (the sessions are listed in the app and in the Day One and Day Two schedules. The sessions are mildly structured small group discussions on:

• Creating a new career in support
• Women working in the support world
• Getting started in support management
• Being a person of color in tech
• Building and leading support organizations
• Being LGBTQ in the field of support

Each session has a designated topic, such as “Women working in the support field.” Expo attendees will, in advance, propose discussion questions related to that primary topic, such as “what policies and practices best support the long-term career growth of women in support?”

We encourage all interested community members to submit Discussion Questions in advance of the Support Driven Expo. Questions are due by 11:59pm Eastern on Tuesday, June 19. Please – submit your questions by joining the UnConference Trello board.

At Expo, help us determine what is most important to discuss. Stop by the Support Driven booth (near registration) to vote on the discussion questions before 11am each day. The top 3-6 questions per topic will become the content for that session.

At the beginning of each UnConference session, you will self-divide into groups of 7 or less, based on the discussion questions. Once we have begun, you can choose to float from group to group to engage around different questions using the Law of 2 Feet: if you aren’t learning or contributing or having fun where you stand now, use your two feet and go somewhere where you can learn or contribute or have fun. UnConferences are very flexible :-).

One Volunteer Moderator will participate in each small group in order to promote safe, civic engagement. All participants are expected to adhere to the Support Driven Code of Conduct, as well as to be mindful to share “air-time” with other participants.

Venue Maps

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Campus Map

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Area Map

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Q. Is there a Wi-Fi password?
No. To access Wi-Fi, use the guest Wi-Fi network and accept the network terms. Wi-Fi will be spotty on the arena floor in the main room.

Q. What should I bring?
– Your mobile device with the app installed (and an external charger if you have one)
– Your preferred note-taking tools (pen and paer, laptop, iPad, phone).
– Money for lunch and transit

Q. What should I wear?
Wear what makes you comfortable. Anything from t-shirt to business casual is normal.

Q. Are there outlets I can use to charge my phone?
There are outlets around the venue, but we’re not sure how much competition there might be for them. If you have an external battery charger you can bring, we recommend bringing it.

Q. Where is lost and found?
At the Support Driven table.

Q. Someone has injured themselves. Where is First Aid?
If it’s an emergency, call 911, then report it to an Expo Guide with a yellow wristband. If it’s not 911-level injury or emergency, find an Expo Guide with a yellow wristband.

Q. Where can I nurse my baby?
There is a new lactation room in the Viking Pavilion in room 245.

Q. Will the talks and workshops be recorded?
Talks will be recorded. Workshops will not. Speakers will receive a digital copy of their talk after the videographer’s editing process is complete. We do not yet have a plan for how to make the videos available more broadly — that’s something we still need to figure out :-).

Q. What time does everything begin?
Sessions begin at 9am on Thursday and Friday.

Q. What time does everything end?
Everything wraps up at 5pm each day at the venue. However, there is a launch party hosted by Guru at Ground Kontrol Thursday evening, and the following evening there is a community meetup also at Ground Kontrol. See Parties and Community Meetups above.

Q. What’s the difference between a talk and a workshop?
Talks are 20 minutes and are a speaker presenting information to an audience. Workshops are 45 minutes and are hands-on and interactive. There is also a panel in Talk Room B at 4:00pm on Day One (Thursday).

Q. Can I request a track or topic for next year’s Expo?
Yes! We would love that! We will send out a survey after the event, and there is a question about that on the survey. If you’re afraid you’ll forget your idea, please ping Andrea Badgley or Scott Tran on the Attendify App or via the SD Slack (@andreabadgley and @scott) to request the session.

Q. How do I connect with the Support professionals I’ve met after the conference is over?
Join Support Driven Slack!

Q. I want to present/offer a workshop/volunteer for next year’s event, how do I do that?
We will send out an attendee survey after the event — please let us know on that survey, and be sure to include your name so we can follow up with you about it!
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