Telecommuting = Coworking = Telework

OK, this is ridiculous.

Is This Fun?

Folks….it is 2010. The Internet is at nearly everyone’s feet, computers have evolved into lean mean mobile machines, phones have done the same.

Social networks abound, email, IM, Twitter, Facebook, videoconferencing, voice, video, and data….all at your fingertips.

Airports, train stations, McDonalds, Starbucks, Barnes & Noble, just about every where there is wireless access to the Internet.

Why are you still commuting to a central location to work?  DUH…

I know why:

Old Fashioned Bosses (OFB’s) who cannot understand that work gets done even if people are not under their thumb.  Guess what OFB…yeah you….under your thumb, a lot of socializing happens along with some work.

Try this:  Stick your head out your door, go ahead, take a look around.  See all those people hunched over their computers working like crazy? I’ll bet their Farms are doing really well….

Here is my advice to you:  Time to retire…let the new kids become the bosses, let them change the world.

Here is how the young kids will do it:

  • They set a deadline for a project.
  • They let their employee work on that project.
  • If the project gets done…great.
  • If not, they grab a new employee.

Where the work got done, how it got done, what time it got done….it does not matter.  It got done per the agreed to schedule.  That is all that matters, period, period, period…

In the process, all sorts of good things happen:  happier more engaged employees, lower costs, reduced traffic, reduced emissions, reduced reliance on oil, increased productivity….DUH.

Telecommuting = Coworking = Telework.

Happy retirement OFB….welcome new kid on the block!

Advertisements

7 comments

  1. Yes… this is exactly it! I’ve worked with high-tech companies who said (one in particular) “Through the Internet, we will change the way people work, live, and play”, and yet, many of these same companies still required employees to slog through traffic jams for 60+ mile commutes to park our butts in cubicles for 8-hours, only to work on a computer and to use email, and web-conferencing, inter-office and International conference calls. ALL of this work could be done from the comfort of a home “office” or from a cowork facility. ALL of this work does NOT require the 1-2 hour commute… the stress of the drive, the hassles with the car, the wasting of gas, the wear-and-tear on the vehicle (not to mention on the driver). By allowing workers not absolutely needed to be physically present (such as those who pull plugs, install equipment, and do building/data-center maintenance) to work from home or coworking facilities, companies can reduce their bottom-line costs, increase their profits, increase worker productivity, increase worker satisfaction, increase worker lifestyle and health, while saving energy, being “green”, reducing land footprint, and preventing additional highway congestion.

    Seems like a win-win situation to me.

  2. Changing “OFB” company culture is not easy. I suggest trying a phased approach. Start with a proposal that includes 1 or 2 days a week working remotely and demonstrate that results stay the same.
    I also suggest preserving some face-to-face time long-term. Not all teams or individuals are completely self-sufficient and happy with no real human contact. Swinging the pendulum too far to the remote side may not be best for all.
    I work for the “live, work, play and learn” company Dave mentions above, and work at home every Friday… and love it!

    1. The problem is…stigma. As soon as the employee approaches the OFB with a proposal to telecommute (or cowork) what is the first thing that pops in the mind of the OFB? You know the answer….and this keeps the employee from proposing. 1 or 2 days a week telecommuting is optimum, but, there are many cases where far flung employees work full time and connect via videoconferencing (I will argue that the old optimum of 1 or 2 days at home can easily be extended to 3 or 4 considering modern technology). In fact, ESnet had several FT geographically dispersed employees and a really cool “Virtual Watercooler” (designed by you should know who) that kept them in visual contact all day long (vc via Internet is free, so a constant video connection up is no problem, esp when BW is not an issue as at ESnet, or the live, work, play and learn company).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s