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Alexandra Samuel | Digital workplace expert | Author of Remote, Inc.
Lavin Exclusive Speaker

In the post-pandemic world, the time-honored rules of work no longer apply. Alexandra Samuel shows us how to carve a path towards a thriving and productive hybrid work culture. A digital workplace expert and author of the timely and practical book Remote Inc., Alexandra brings over 25 years of experience as a hybrid worker to her presentations, helping audiences conceptualize and act on new ways of working in the modern age.

“Hybrid gives us the opportunity to create a new world of work, and a new kind of workplace—one that combines the commitment and energy of the traditional office with the flexibility and focus of working from home.”

— Alexandra Samuel

The most successful organizations will embrace the new hybrid model of work as a way to renew their organizational culture, fuel effective collaboration and attract the most talented employees.  But how do we foster that kind of culture in between off-sites and Zoom cocktails? How do we strengthen collaboration without back-to-back video calls? And how do we re-establish the office as a core part of our working rhythms, when so many employees are cozily remote?


The key is to shift how managers and employees think about flexibility in this new world of work. “Flexibility isn’t about picking your days in the office, or how often you come in,” Alexandra says. “Real flexibility is about aligning your team to make the most of their face-to-face time, so that they have more focus and flexibility on their days at home.”


That’s the kind of flexibility that comes from understanding how to combine office and remote time in a way that makes the most of each setting. In her new book Remote Inc.: How to Thrive at Work...Wherever You Are, Alexandra teams up with productivity guru Robert Pozen to lay out a roadmap for effective hybrid work. 

 

The most successful hybrid employees adopt a “business-of-one” approach, explains Alexandra, meaning that they take on the responsibility and accountability of a small business owner. They define their work in terms of goals and deliverables instead of by the eight-hour workday; embrace a rhythm of “punctuated collaboration” that uses structured check-ins to complement solo work; and use the focus of their at-home days to deliver even stronger results. Both the book and Alexandra’s eye-opening talks teach professionals to organize their priorities, communicate effectively, structure online meetings, and maintain a healthy work-life balance in the context of hybrid work.
 
A regular contributor to The Wall Street Journal, The Harvard Business Review, CBC, and JSTOR Daily, Alexandra is a prolific writer whose articles on management, hybrid work, and tech culture have earned extensive media coverage. The author of the Work Smarter with Social Media series for Harvard Business Review Press, Alexandra has long experience helping people navigate the digital workplace. As the data journalist for the annual Forbes list of the World’s Most Influential CMOs, she has a deep understanding of how top brands and executives navigate digital transformation and the realignment of employee and customer experience in a hybrid world. She works regularly with companies like Twitter, Sprinklr and Microsoft on reports and workshops that address the biggest challenges in digital business. 

 

Alexandra began her career in technology as the research director for the Governance in the Digital Economy program, leading a Toronto-based research program for a global consortium of government leaders from her home office in Vancouver. As the VP Social Media for customer intelligence software company Vision Critical, Alexandra led a social media analytics pilot program while working from home so she could homeschool her autistic son. And as the co-founder of Social Signal, Alexandra built one of the world’s first social media agencies while working out of her home with her husband and their first hires. She holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University, where her dissertation was the first comprehensive study of hacktivism (politically motivated computer hacking). While at Harvard, Alexandra researched the impact of technology on social capital for Robert Putnam’s groundbreaking book, Bowling Alone.  

Testimonials

“Alex is amazing! We just loved her, and the audience did as well.”

SGI/SGI CANADA
Testimonials

“Alexandra listened to the briefing that we gave her, which meant that she uniquely tailored her keynote to the needs of our audience. It was so perfectly aligned to the workshop prior to her speaking, that it really added to our meeting. Alexandra was engaging, confident, and backed all her points up with research—we especially valued that she prompted us to think differently about how we approach our hybrid workplace. I would certainly recommend Alexandra as a keynote speaker.”

BC Lottery Corporation
Testimonials

“As I started looking for experts to share practical tips and strategies to help our customers manage the remote and hybrid experience, I found Alexandra. She came highly recommended as a passionate, authentic speaker on this topic. Alexandra was a pleasure to work with and always responsive. The webinar audience comments were overwhelmingly positive. I highly recommend her as a speaker for your next event!”

Zoom

Speech Topics

Team Building
Forging the Hybrid Workplace Remote Work Returns to the Office
The Covid pandemic catalyzed an overnight shift to remote work, but the real transformation lies ahead. As offices reopen, organizations will need to manage teams that mix in-person and remote workers, and employees will need to manage their schedules to get the best of both worlds. This transition offers the ideal opportunity for employers to get remote work right—not just by combining it with the benefits of time in the office, but by providing employees with the guidance they need to make the most of their days at home.

“These hybrid arrangements will require a massive rethinking on the part of bosses,” author Alexandra Samuel observed in her cover story for The Wall Street Journal’s Work from Home report. “No longer will they be able to manage remote workers like they’re office employees whose desks happen to be really far apart.”

In this inspiring and pragmatic presentation, Alexandra will draw on her extensive research (distilled in her book Remote Inc.) and long experience with remote work to show your managers and team the way forward. Starting with identifying the unique advantages of time in the office, as well as the unique advantages of time at home, she’ll show you how to build an organizational model and culture that enables employees to shift between lively collaboration and focused solo work. Alexandra will leave your team ready to turn your remote + office combination into a powerful competitive advantage for attracting great talent, enabling strong performance, and delivering excellent results.
Corporate Culture
The New Flexibility Creating Your Hybrid Organizational Culture
Culture: It’s the organizational glue that holds your team together, aligns your employees around shared priorities and values, and inspires people to go the extra mile.  But how do you create that kind of culture if many of your team members have yet to meet one another, or if some of your employees value “flexibility” more than time at the office?
 
In this eye-opening presentation, Remote, Inc. author Alexandra Samuel helps your managers and employees see “flexibility” through a new lens. Real flexibility comes from spending consistent time together at the office, which leads to fewer interruptions, more focus and yes, more flexibility, on days at home. Alexandra shows how aligning our time at the office helps us build trust and effectiveness as a team, and creates more room for our individual tasks and personal priorities, too. 
Corporate Culture
Beyond the Boardroom Reinventing Collaboration for a World of Hybrid Work
The modern business meeting solves a very real problemif it’s still 1961. Back then, a face-to-face meeting saved a lot of time and labor and Wite-Out, because the only other way to exchange ideas was by getting your secretary to type it up, mail it out, and wait for a response.

The meeting stuck around long after new technologies made other ways of work feasible. The overnight shift to remote work has made those new ways necessaryand invited us to radically rethink the balance between individual and group work.
 
In this engaging presentation, veteran remote worker and author Alexandra Samuel will show you how embracing that opportunity will not only help your team thrive during the pandemic, but position your organization to be even more successful in the years ahead.
Workshops & Interactive
Managing the Hybrid Workplace
Organizations have committed to a hybrid model that combines a mix of remote and office-based work. But how can executives and managers determine the right structure for their particular organization or team? And how can they engage employees in making this new model a success?
 
In this hands-on session, hybrid work veteran Alexandra Samuel helps your managers and employees develop their own hybrid plan—one that gets them excited about the opportunities that come from returning to the office part time. 
 
Using the FLOCS model, she assesses the function, location, organizational model, culture, and schedule of your team. From there, Alexandra will guide you on how to develop a strategy and process for running virtual and mixed teams, informed by your organization’s personal objectives. This workshop covers how to establish performance guidelines and expectations, how to set common expectations around meetings and communications, and how to create a robust hybrid infrastructure that involves both updating your IT toolkit and reconfiguring physical workplaces for optimal success.
 
Practical and highly targeted to your organization’s goals, this workshop is a smart investment for the future of work in the post-pandemic era.