Scaling accessibility: from a single Sketch plugin to enterprise player | Cat Noone (Founder & CEO, Stark)

We talk Stark's community-driven distribution strategy, the shift from founder-led sales to a sales team, and more.

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Designing accessibility into software is both a huge business opportunity and a passion that Cat Noone, founder and CEO of Stark, has embraced. I've known Cat for nearly ten years (I interviewed her for my book, Designing Products People Love, back in 2015), and her devotion to building products that materially improve people's lives is stronger than ever.

Stark began as a humble Sketch plugin and is now a key player in organizations like FedEx, Apple, Google, NASA, Salesforce, and many others for integrating accessibility into the product development process. In the end, making products more accessible and usable is both good business and a societal good.

We talk Stark's community-driven distribution strategy, the shift from founder-led sales to a sales team, and the valuable lessons learned from early pricing mistakes. We also explore the challenges and strategies involved in the large-scale adoption of design tools, the art of identifying the perfect product launch window, and so much more.

How to listen

What we discuss

  • Cat’s journey with Stark, from a Sketch plugin to a software design giant
  • Community-driven distribution strategy
  • Transition from founder-led sales to a sales team
  • Lessons learned from early pricing blunders in Stark's journey
  • Large-scale adoption of design tools and strategies to overcome challenges
  • Understanding different personas in the purchasing process
  • Viewing the learning curve of sales as an opportunity
  • Scaling a product and empowering account executives
  • Investing in strengths rather than improving weaknesses
  • Cat’s love of reading and her wish for a vacation
  • Stark's mission of making software accessible to the world
  • Obstacles and adaptation in enterprise adoption
  • Founder-led sales and hiring account executives
  • The importance of being present and supportive as a leader


Cat's LinkedIn


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