Robbie Samuels has lectured at many leading educational institutions, including Harvard University, Brown University, Cornell University, and Northeastern University. He’s presented for Marriott International, the U.S. Embassy in Mexico, AmeriCorps, Hostelling International, Feeding America, and the California WIC Association.

He speaks on designing and executing engaging virtual events, virtual and in-person networking, personal branding, and relationship-based business growth strategies.

Known for sharing “small, big ideas” through an engaging and humorous presentation-style, Robbie’s audiences walk away ready to immediately apply simple strategies that have the power to inspire significant change.

Below are sample topics. Please feel free to contact us if you’d like to schedule a talk or discuss a customized presentation.

You can also view videos of his talks at www.youtube.com/robbiesamuels.

Robbie Samuels

No Room for Bad Zoom

Participants were forgiving when the pandemic began and events quickly shifted online, but now they realize that “bad Zoom” is the cause of their “Zoom fatigue.” It’s time to think differently. Instead of trying to replicate in-person events, let’s reimagine them to meet the needs of participants. We invited Robbie Samuels to share his personal evolution from speaking on stage to online. He’s a virtual event design consultant and executive Zoom producer who has hosted or presented at well over 100 virtual events, including a weekly #NoMoreBadZoom Virtual Happy Hour he’s hosted since March 13, 2020. He will share:

  • The ingredients and skills necessary for designing an engaging online experience.
  • The importance of identifying the purpose of your event.
  • What it means to think cinematic rather than theatrical.
  • Why it is important to get 5% better every time you host or present an online event.

Attend this session and you’ll receive Robbie’s #NoMoreBadZoom Settings Checklist so you’re ready to try out the techniques he shares.

Robbie has been certified as a virtual presenter and virtual convener. He wrote “How to Host Your Own Virtual Happy Hour” for Harvard Business Review, was quoted in “The History of the Webinar and Why the Webinar Should Be History” in Forbes, and was recognized as “an industry expert in the field of digital event design” by JDC Events.

He trains presenters and meeting professionals to become Certified Virtual Event Professionals #NoMoreBadZoom through The 5% Advantage Program. 

This session is also available as an Ask the Expert or interview-style session, and could include networking breakout sessions emceed by Robbie.

Since 2009, Robbie has presented on the topic of strategic and inclusive networking. He was invited to share his “croissants vs. bagels” concept as a TEDx:

We’ve all gone to events where we felt out of place or excluded – whether it’s a junior high dance, a business conference, or a party where we didn’t know anyone. As a transgender man, Robbie Samuels knows what it feels like to wonder if he fits in or belongs. Observing the dynamics of groups, he noticed that small changes in body language can lead to outsiders feeling welcomed – or pushed aside. To share this idea, he created “croissants vs. bagels,” a simple concept to help anyone take action to make their business, school, or community more welcoming. In his TEDx talk, he shares this sticky concept and explains how simple, small gestures can mean all the difference for anyone who has ever felt a little bit like an outsider – which is all of us.

From 2009-2020, this was Robbie’s signature talk…

Art of the Schmooze: Strategic, Effective, and Inclusive Networking

Career progression often depends on fostering a strong and supportive professional network, but do you feel awkward at networking events and uncomfortable making new connections? Attend this engaging session to learn tips and tricks that will help introverts and extroverts work a room, from having the right tools to knowing the best approach to engage prospective colleagues and collaborators. No matter your role, you will benefit from being more strategic, effective, and inclusive while building great relationships. Our presenter, Robbie Samuels, believes that your impact on the world is directly related to your willingness to engage your community. Through this session, he will show you how.

At the completion of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Employ strategy and selectivity when choosing which events to attend
  • Identify how to take advantage of small networking opportunities at events
  • Shift their mindset around relationship-building to begin to notice opportunities in everyday life
  • Adapt body language to increase approachability and ease of navigation in the room
  • Apply graceful exit strategies that continue to build relationships

In response to our new reality, Robbie shifted to sharing how to

Leverage Your (Virtual) Network to Grow Your Business

Prior to the pandemic, staying connected with your network and meeting new connections could be accomplished at industry conferences. When those events were postponed, canceled, or transformed into online events those networking opportunities seemed to disappear – or did they? Virtual networking opportunities, through video calls, Facebook groups, and virtual events have become quite prevalent and proven quite beneficial. As the events industry recovers and travel becomes a part of our life, the benefits of virtual business networking won’t be be forgotten. How we meet new people and reconnect with colleagues may have changed, but why we connect is still the same. The key is to figure out how to weave these opportunities into our lives so we reap their benefits without overextending ourselves. 

At the completion of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Create a plan that matches their goals for networking
  • Update their LinkedIn and social media profiles to reflect how they want to be known
  • Utilize video conferencing to stay connected with colleagues
  • Employ strategy and selectivity when choosing which virtual events to attend
  • Nurture existing relationships by mailing cards and gifts
  • Identify online communities that attract the type of people they want to engage with
  • Shift their mindset from “me first” to “how can I help?”

Hire Robbie to Emcee and DJ a Social!

Are you looking for a creative way to engage your members? Want to give them opportunities to get to know each other beyond what is written on their business cards? Robbie masterfully facilitates a 60-90 minute virtual networking social. These can be member engagement events, volunteer appreciation parties, staff socials, or holiday parties. Robbie will bring energy and excitement to your next event as the emcee/event host.