How to Thrive at Work...Wherever You Are
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.
“Alex is amazing! We just loved her, and the audience did as well.”SGI/SGI CANADA
“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
“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
The shift to hybrid work can pose new challenges to organizational culture and inclusion—or it can be an engine for rethinking the way we organize our work, so that we build teams that are more collaborative, more effective and more inclusive. In this research-driven, practical presentation, Remote, Inc. author Alexandra Samuel shares an equity-focused framework and strategy for hybrid work.
Drawing on data about the emergent gap between on-site and remote workers, Samuel looks at how organizations can develop learning strategies that allow them to measure the impact of hybrid work on their diversity, equity and inclusion goals. To ensure that hybrid moves us closer to these goals, Samuel finds inspiration in the neurodiversity movement, helping us ask and answer one fundamental question: How do we help each person on our team do their best work?