Work Without Limits

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Executive Summit

August 6–8, 2018 | San Francisco, CA


A gathering of innovators to influence the future of work.

The invitation-only Work Without Limits™ Executive Summit will help forward-thinking executives, HR visionaries, and some of the biggest names from the Fortune 500 prepare for the changing world of work.

At the two-day Summit, interactive sessions on how businesses are tackling talent needs today, extending their workforce capabilities, and effectively working with remote freelance talent, will equip senior executives to rethink and revise the talent frameworks of their organizations.


The content was thorough and comprehensive, covering all challenges companies face.
Nihat SengulMicrosoft
The event’s efficiency also shows me how well your company is run.
Nigel StoreyJohnson & Johnson
Every aspect of the conference was well polished.
Eric GreggInavero


6:00 pm-8:00 pm

Kick off the Work Without Limits™ Executive Summit at the Welcome Reception hosted at the Ritz-Carlton’s Terrace Courtyard.

8:30 am-8:35 am

Eric Gilpin, Upwork

8:35 am-9:20 am

Liz Wiseman, Best selling author, speaker and executive advisor

We’ve all had experience with two dramatically different types of leaders. The first type drains intelligence, energy, and capability from the people around them and always needs to be the smartest person in the room. These are the idea killers, the energy sappers, the diminishers of talent and commitment. On the other side of the spectrum are leaders who use their intelligence to amplify the smarts and capabilities of the people around them. When these leaders walk into a room, light bulbs go off over people’s heads; ideas flow and problems get solved. These are the leaders who inspire employees to stretch themselves and get more from other people. These are the Multipliers. And the world needs more of them, especially now when leaders are expected to do more with less. In this highly engaging talk, Liz Wiseman will share the research behind Multipliers and illustrate the resoundingly positive and profitable effect these Multipliers have on organizations – how they get more done with fewer resources, develop and attract talent, and cultivate new ideas and energy to drive organizational change and innovation. She’ll introduce the five disciplines that distinguish Multipliers from Diminishers and provide practice tips for leading like a Multiplier.

9:20 am-9:50 am

Barry Asin, Staffing Industry Analysts

With technology driving transformation across industries and continents, the workforce solutions ecosystem is finding new ways to automate the connection to talent. Staffing Industry Analysts estimates that total human cloud spending reached between $47 and $51 billion globally in 2016, with total revenue nearly doubling in size. The human cloud landscape continues to mature as a growing number of enterprises incorporate these solutions into their talent supply chain. In this session, Barry Asin, President of Staffing Industry Analysts, will explore the state and evolution of the human cloud and what’s ahead for the future.

9:50 am–10:20 am
10:20 am-10:50 am

Katherine Maher, The Wikimedia Foundation | Stephane Kasriel, Upwork

The traditional 9-to-5 office routine is quickly being replaced by a globally-distributed, flexible model of collaboration across time and space. As companies and organizations increasingly embrace a more agile and diverse workforce, they’re forced to confront a significant question: how does a team stay synchronized and productive when teammates and other contributors are scattered across the globe? As a distributed organization that supports a global free knowledge movement, the Wikimedia Foundation has experienced first hand the challenges and benefits of collaborating with people on a global scale. In this fireside chat with Upwork CEO Stephane Kasriel, the Wikimedia Foundation’s Executive Director, Katherine Maher, will share key learnings and best practices for effectively building and sustaining collaboration and remote working around the world.

10:50 am-11:30 am

Shari Cruz (Moderator) | Noella Yeung | Julie Ewald | Melody Richmond

The freelance workforce is growing faster than ever, outpacing overall U.S. workforce growth by 3X since 2014. With 36% of the U.S. workforce freelancing today, organizations must be prepared to embrace the 21st century workforce. Join freelancers from across the U.S. as they share the key factors that drove them to explore freelancing, while offering advice to companies on how to embrace this new world of work.

11:30 am-12:00 pm

Zoe Harte, Upwork | Derek Miller, Amgen

A new era of talent competition is upon us. Finding and attracting the right talent is an ever increasing challenge. As the competition continues to heat up, changes in talent strategies are starting to emerge as companies embrace external sources of talent. In this fireside chat, Upwork’s SVP of HR and Talent Innovation will sit down with Amgen’s VP of HR Derek Miller to discuss emerging talent acquisition trends, and how companies can future-proof their talent strategies.

12:00 pm–1:00 pm
1:00 pm-1:30 pm

Eric Gregg, Inavero

As professionals are seeking more freedom, companies are thinking beyond traditional employment to build more flexible teams. How are forward-thinking businesses tackling today’s talent needs? What should companies be planning for in the future? In this session, the CEO of independent research firm Inavero will highlight findings from the second annual “Future Workforce Report” and share best practices for optimizing a more flexible workforce.

1:30 pm-2:00 pm

Paul Estes, Microsoft

The U.S. freelance workforce is currently 57 million strong and growing fast. In fact, freelancers make up 36 percent of the U.S. workforce. This has created a fundamental shift in how businesses and workers alike engage around work. The growth of freelancing opens up just as many new opportunities for companies and helps employees rethink what is possible. The ‘freelance economy’ can expand business talent pools, empower a remote workforce, and help companies increase the pace of innovation. How can organizations capitalize on this growing trend and effectively engage a freelance workforce? In this session, Microsoft Senior Director Paul Estes will share his personal journey in discovering the untapped power of freelancers, and provide a blueprint model for successfully engaging freelance talent through work breakdown and delegation.

2:00 pm–2:30 pm
2:30 pm-4:00 pm

Eric Gilpin, Upwork | Dyan Finkhousen, GE | Cathleen Nilson, Samsung | Ann Schulte, P&G | Anthony Buffum, Stanley Black & Decker

For over 100 years, most people interpreted “hiring” to mean bringing people to work onsite in full-time or part-time roles. This concept is changing due to skill shortages, global talent pools, and a massive rise in virtual and contract work. Hiring now means finding the right mix of skills and matching them to business demands by tapping into an increasingly global, virtual, and contingent workforce. This panel will feature Fortune 500 leaders explaining how they have partnered with Upwork Enterprise to engage talent differently and build contingent workforce programs to drive growth and innovation. They’ll share their ‘secret sauce’ for finding, engaging, and working with remote talent at businesses of any size and in any industry.

4:00 pm-4:15 pm

Stephane Kasriel, Upwork

4:15 pm–4:30 pm
4:30 pm-5:30 pm

Erik Wahl, Internationally recognized artist and best-selling author

Maintaining a successfully growing brand in today’s ever-changing market is difficult. Your team is working exceptionally hard, but could potentially be worn out, confused, or maybe even heading down the wrong path. There are days when, as their leader, you wish you could push the restart button. You know your team is talented but in desperate need of new motivation, a tool to realign your troops and revitalize them to perform their jobs as originally envisioned. In this session, internationally renowned graffiti artist and best selling business author, Erik Wahl, will join attendees in creating an on-stage painting that will serve as a metaphor to the core message - encouraging organizations toward profitability through innovation and performance.

5:30 pm

International Smoke

Join us for an evening at San Francisco’s International Smoke—a collaboration between Michelin-starred chef Michael Mina and Ayesha Curry.

Transportation will be provided to and from the dinner.

9:00 am-10:00 am

Bonnie Sherman, Upwork | Margaret Lilani, Upwork

Technology has made a lot of things about our lives much easier and more enjoyable. Finding our way around a city, buying products, watching movies, and hundreds of other life experiences have been transformed by social and mobile technologies. Work is no exception. Upwork Enterprise combines technology and freelancer engagement services, giving companies a single solution that makes it easier to get work done with freelancers. Built on the largest freelancing website, you get simple, quick, and cost effective access to qualified contractors.

During this product demo and tutorial, Upwork VP of Product Bonnie Sherman will walk through the Upwork Enterprise product roadmap to demonstrate how we see technology enabling companies to get more done with freelancers. Joining Bonnie will be VP of Talent Services Margaret Lilani, who will reveal how companies can develop a winning talent acquisition strategy with Upwork Enterprise.

10:00 am-11:30 am

Join our breakout working sessions to tap the collective experience and brainpower of Summit attendees. Discuss the challenges facing contingent work programs at various stages of maturity. Learn how to overcome any objections to the online work model.

  • How to get started and secure buy-in
  • How to launch an on-demand program
  • How to expand across the enterprise