Q3 PNR Insights | New Work

October 7, 2021

Hi everyone!

We hope that you had a great summer! We wanted to share an update about our work and discuss the topic du jour, remote work.

Future of the workspace

The future of the office has dominated water cooler conversations lately. It’s a complicated topic and has catapulted itself into every boardroom. In our estimation, it will remain a key variable for every executive over the next decade. Working virtually is not a question of if but of how. Even leaders that are recalcitrant towards a distributed workforce will need to make concessions to attract & retain top talent.

At PNR, we’ve gone entirely remote and relinquished our beautiful downtown office. A few things that we’ve learned so far at our scale:

  • Removing geography as a constraint has enabled team members to live in other cities & live more fulfilling lives
  • Building a remote culture is possible but requires deliberate thought and experimentation
  • There are a thousand shades of gray. Some people prefer working remotely and others prefer a mix. We provide stipends for team members to benefit from co-working environments

Running strategy sessions remotely

Given this new reality, strategic planning retreats have also gone virtual. With people from a leadership team scattered across locations and time zones, are remote strategy sessions effective? We believe so. Virtual sessions can match and sometimes exceed in person ones. The biggest insight from running virtual workshops is that it levels the playing field for an executive team.

In a typical in person meeting, the leaders that win their points are usually the ones who are the most charismatic and eloquently deliver their argument. This doesn’t always mean they have the best ideas. Virtual sessions reduce biases by using collaborative tools, breakout rooms and techniques like Think, Write, Share. The last one has been particularly effective where we ask a leadership team to write down their ideas and then share in a round table.

You can read more about running remote strategy sessions here.

Some company news!

We’re excited to announce two new members to the PNR team!

Marie-Odile Duchesneau, Engagement Manager

Marie-Odile has a multidisciplinary background in music, research and management, Marie-Odile Duchesneau has developed fields of interest for new organizational practices and innovation levers in culture and in the industrial value chain. With a bachelor’s degree in music from the University of Montreal, a graduate degree specializing in the management of cultural organizations and a master’s degree in management from HEC Montreal, she then accumulated experiences in change management consulting and in project management, especially in the music industry. She gained knowledge of the cultural entrepreneurship community, having worked in a web development company specialized in distributed technologies and smart contracts for the benefit of artists and the management of copyright.

Olivier O’Neel, Analyst

Olivier completed his bachelor in engineering physics before doing his master’s degree in management of technology and innovation. During his graduate degree he got exposed to the consulting world and got hooked on strategic planning for businesses. After working in IT for the insurance industry, he found an amazing opportunity to develop his curiosity and interests at PNR.

We’re hiring!

The team is growing and hiring. We’re looking for a client lead with a technology background and analyst with marketing experience.

Please spread the word!

Our most popular content

Our most downloaded podcasts from the past quarter:

Trillion dollar algorithms with Philippe Beaudoin, Co-founder and CEO @ Waverly

We spoke with Philippe Beaudoin, Co-founder and CEO @ Waverly. Philippe is a venture scientist constantly looking for ideas that can improve society. In 2020, he co-founded Waverly where his team and he are building a discovery engine for our increasingly diverse social and content landscapes. Waverly relies on natural language and Empathetic AI to let users connect with their true aspirations. Before that,in 2016, Philippe co-founded Element AI, a world leader in enterprise AI. Philippe holds a PhD from University of Montreal, was a researcher at University of British Columbia and spent the last 20 years honing his technological and leadership skills, including half a decade at Google.

Redefining transportation with Maxie Lafleur, CEO @ Bus.com

We spoke with Maxie Lafleur, CEO @ Bus.com. Maxie Lafleur is a talented business leader who quickly rose through the professional ranks with extensive experience in digital transformation and B2B business growth. She also has solid expertise in mergers and acquisitions and business expansion through joint ventures with large international corporations. Most recently, she was instrumental as Chief Financial Officer at Bus.com, improving the company’s profitability and redefining how Bus.com positions itself in the market. Her experience working abroad in Europe and Asia positions the company favorably for expansion into new countries.

Startup ecosystems with Annie-Claude Devriese, Managing Director @ Notman House

We spoke with Annie-Claude Devriese, Managing Director @ Notman House. Annie-Claude Devriese has been the General Manager of Notman House for the past 3 years. Prior to that, she was in charge of the OSMO café (at Notman House) for almost 2 years. Over the past few years, she has contributed to making Notman House a dynamic and inclusive gathering place for Montreal’s startup community, as well as a venue for various cultural and gastronomic events. Notman House is home to 235 startups that have raised over $1 billion in funding and are collectively worth close to $2.7 billion. Each year, Notman hosts over 400 workshops, hackathons, corporate offsites, and business networking events, with an average of 8,000 attendees.

Our favorite articles:

Operating leverage Alex Taussig (reading time: 8 minutes)

This is an interesting post about operating leverage. Operating leverage measures the degree to which a company can increase its profits by growing revenue. Alex Taussig explains the concept and then uses product vs. service oriented marketplaces to illustrate the differences between the two. This notion is quite applicable to other industries too and find more articles related to the topic.

How to be an Effective Executive Delian Asparouhov (reading time: 19 minutes)

The effective executive is one of the most popular business books of all time. This post dissects Keith Rabois (of PayPal fame) advice on being an effective executive.

The Proper Role of the Chief Strategy Officer Roger Martin (reading time: 7 minutes)

The modern title of chief strategy officer is becoming more prevalent in organizations but what does the role entail? Roger Martin brilliantly explains the nature of the position: facilitate the creation of strategy, coordinate the creation of strategy, and ensure the consistency of strategy.

We hope that you have a great fall!

The PNR Team