Hello! I'm Sacha Connor. I worked fully remotely for over 8 years leading large, distributed teams responsible for hundreds of millions of dollars of business, coaching many remote direct reports, and managing many remote external partner relationships.
I’ve had a front row seat to how work is evolving and had to pioneer this new way of work within a large, Fortune 500, company.
I have experienced first-hand how hard it truly is to lead across distance. I've put in the extra time and energy needed to make it successful and I have a passion for sharing what I have learned to help others get the skills and tools to be successful in today’s virtual workplace.
Virtual Work Insider provides personalized coaching to teams, managers, and executives to develop the skills to lead virtual teams, influence across the distance, and coach remote direct reports.
Our goal is to improve your business results and speed to market, and increase employee inclusion and engagement.
Virtual Work Credentials
Almost a Decade of Virtual Work Experience: I have worked fully remotely for over 8 years. This adds up to over 10,000 hours of leading virtual meetings, giving virtual presentations, brainstorming virtually, influencing remotely, leading virtual team building activities, and coaching remote direct reports.
Pioneered virtual work within a Fortune 500 company: I was one of the first people in the marketing function at The Clorox Company to work remotely full time. I founded one of the first-ever Virtual Workforce Employee Resource groups, which now serves over 750 global members.
Virtual Work Coaching: I have provided guidance to individuals and to companies in a variety of fields about how to improve business results in a virtual work environment, how to ask your manager to work remotely, and how to create a virtual workforce employee resource group. This includes companies like Clorox, Nielsen, American Airlines, Thomson Reuters, and Bank of the West.
I am actually a marketer by trade. I am also a wife and a mom of two school-age kids. I grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia and graduated from Lehigh University with a degree in Marketing. I started my career in advertising account management, first at a small agency in Philadelphia, Backe Communications, and then worked for a much larger agency in San Francisco, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. After 4 years in advertising I moved client-side, just across the San Francisco Bay, to The Clorox Company, headquartered in Oakland, California.
Over the next 14 years I helped build multiple brands, from Hidden Valley ranch dressing, to Brita water filtration, to Kingsford charcoal, and most recently Pine-Sol and Liquid Plumr. I have held leadership positions across Brand Marketing, Sales, and New Production Innovation. My career has given me the great opportunity to dissect and influence consumer behavior, to understand the importance of crafting great stories, and tons of experience leading teams and coaching people across multiple functions and from many different backgrounds.
The Big Move
In 2010, after the birth of our first child, my husband and I decided to leave San Francisco to move back to the Philadelphia suburbs so that we could be close to our immediate families. It was important to us that our children grow up surrounded by their grandparents and extended family.
Making a decision like that can be hard, especially if it means potentially having to leave a company and job that you love. I was so fortunate that the most senior marketing and business leaders in my company were willing to experiment and say yes to my proposal to stay in my role and do it from the other side of the country.
Think back to 2010. The iPhone was relatively new, many of the virtual collaboration tools that we use today like FaceTime, Slack, Zoom and BlueJeans were either in their infancy or hadn’t been invented yet. Many companies, including the one I was working for, did not have the infrastructure set up to enable seamless virtual work.
I was living 3,000 miles and two time zones away from the team I was leading and responsible for millions of dollars of business. I felt an incredible responsibility to succeed in working remotely to enable other employees in the company to follow in my footsteps and have the same flexibility.
I had to learn how to work differently. I set out to make my team and senior leaders feel as if I was right there with them, to ensure that the work product and the team culture didn’t skip a beat.
As I was learning these virtual work skills, it became evident that the way I was learning to work was applicable to 95% of the other employees since the company had become more and more decentralized over time, between US and International office hubs, and work from homers.
Virtual Work Capability Building
I set out to help my coworkers navigate virtual work by co-founding, ORBIT, a virtual workforce employee resource group, one of the first of its kind in the country. It grew to be the largest ERG in the company (over 750 members). It not only helped improve virtual collaboration within the company, but it also influenced the company's Technology and HR strategies. ORBIT became the training arm and testing ground for the company's IT department. ORBIT also influenced enabling all HR and functional training to be accessible remotely and helped develop an action plan for the company to overcome Distance Bias, one part of the SEEDS Bias training.