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(Some Bathrobe Wearing Guy)   The Internet should have allowed most people to work from home. So why are we still commuting?   (domikepayne.blogspot.com) divider line 177
    More: Interesting, workers of the world, telecommuting, driverless cars  
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3382 clicks; posted to Business » on 08 Oct 2012 at 12:42 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-08 01:10:38 PM  

smerfnablin: If you ever had to be on a conference call with sales reps/engineers that are working from home and all you can hear are their screaming kids in the background, then you should know the answer to this question


Haha, this.

But there could be a happy middle between 100% work from home and 100% work in the main office.

Microoffices would be cool. There are single-desk 200 sq ft offices available blocks from my apartment that are really affordable. If I had a 100% telecommuting job, I'd rent one for myself so I could be motivated to put on pants and feel like I'm "going to work."
 
2012-10-08 01:20:50 PM  
I can't work at home because of my cat. If I sit in my 'office' the cat constantly jumps up and nudges the screen, walks on the keyboard, etc. If I lock him out of the room, he howls constantly and throws himself at the door.
 
2012-10-08 01:22:12 PM  
I can't work from home. I can do maybe an hour or two, but sooner or later I end up doing housework or playing Borderlands or taking my dog for a walk or something when I should be working. Being in my office keeps me focused on the job at hand.
 
2012-10-08 01:32:33 PM  
I don't know if I'd want to work from home. I don't want to blur the lines between my sanctuary and my job.
 
2012-10-08 01:34:12 PM  
As someone who works in IT, part of my job could be done remotely (Image creation), but part of it can't. Only because our people are too lazy to walk to a network printer, I can't imagine the biatching if I had to tell them to go to the IT department with their old printer, get a new one, set it up and send me the numbers for inventory
 
2012-10-08 01:37:27 PM  
It really seems like most people's problems with telecommuting can be resolved if they are willing to dedicate resources to fixing them.

IMHO - you really should have an equivalent 'office environment' in your home. I'd absolutely want a clear, physical, delineation between being 'at work' and 'at home' even if it's just opening the spare-bedroom door. I'd go so far as having a work computer and a home computer.
 
2012-10-08 01:42:57 PM  
It really depends on the job, and your personality. If you don't have the discipline to get the job done on your own, then telecommuting is not for you. The upside is that I can live in a low cost of living area, while earning a good salary.

I've worked from home for over three years now, and am far more productive than in an office environment. Between the phone and chat programs, I'm never isolated. One cat is always resident on my desk - if I could only get her on the payroll as an assistant, I'd be styling.

It's not for everyone, but if it works, it's great.
 
2012-10-08 01:43:03 PM  
Some companies like to have a body in a chair. I work from home sometimes during the week, but my employer will not allow a permanent telecommute solution, even though almost all of my work is done remotely. Silly really.
 
2012-10-08 01:43:21 PM  

Aarontology: Generation_D: Aarontology: A couple of lots laptops with sensitive information on them put a halt to that real damn quick here.

Must suck your corporate IT security allowed that fail to happen. Have you considered hiring a security consultant?

It was less about IT security as it was about some dumbass leaving the company laptop at a cafe. No information got out as far as I know, but they got super paranoid after that.


I disagree. That situation has EVERYTHING to do with IT security.
 
2012-10-08 01:46:07 PM  
It's not enough for workers to be busy. They must look busy and you can't look busy if no one can see you.
 
2012-10-08 01:47:19 PM  
Because working from home sucks?

s3.amazonaws.com
 
2012-10-08 01:49:04 PM  

smerfnablin: If you ever had to be on a conference call with sales reps/engineers that are working from home and all you can hear are their screaming kids in the background, then you should know the answer to this question


I work at home with three kids (when they're not at school), two dogs, and a cat. (I gotta say, the cat has never been a problem.) My co-workers almost never hear anything in the background because I stay on mute until I have something to say. If I have a lot to say, the door is shut, the dogs go outside, and the kids know to shut their yaps when mom is on a call.

I also agree with the "office environment" at home. My office is just a corner of my bedroom, but it's the "work zone". If I want to play games, I take one of the laptops or my iPad into the dining room or the living room and play there.
 
2012-10-08 01:53:06 PM  
There are some jobs that just can't be done by telecomuting Like mine for instance.

I drive a truck delivering sheet metal parts to job sites. Despite what many people think, there are STILL jobs out there that require a human to do physical labor!
 
2012-10-08 01:53:07 PM  
Ahh, the thread where everyone talks about how much smarter he is than his boss and how he should get paid more than his boss and the only reason his boss is the boss is because of buzzwords and how he could totally use buzzwords just as well, but it's beneath him and that's why he'll never be the boss. It's the system's fault.
 
2012-10-08 01:54:51 PM  
Most policymakers assume that anybody who's permitted to "work from home" will spend their days the same way they would: about an hour a day of trying to seem responsive, and seven hours of masturbating themselves raw.
 
kab
2012-10-08 01:57:54 PM  
Working from home, getting a kick, etc.

Helps save a good chunk of change, that much is certain.
 
2012-10-08 02:03:10 PM  
I wish I could telecommute. Difficulty: I'm the one organizing our switch to a paperless office so other people can telecommute. So instead I read Fark all day while watching people scan thousands of pages of financial information.
 
2012-10-08 02:04:17 PM  

smerfnablin: If you ever had to be on a conference call with sales reps/engineers that are working from home and all you can hear are their screaming kids in the background, then you should know the answer to this question


THIS is the reason i rent an office 5 miles from home

and those random honeydos don't help either
 
2012-10-08 02:04:33 PM  

ThatGuyFromTheInternet: I kinda wish I could telecommute. Difficulty: Security Guard.


I telecommute working on learning systems that analyze video and respond in real time. Shortly, you won't be telecommuting, you'll be automated out of a job.
 
2012-10-08 02:06:23 PM  

tricycleracer: A couple bad apples here got telecommuting shut down completely.

If you're "working from home", don't take your family to Disney World.


That's what happened here. People started doing teleconferences from ball games, playgrounds and while in the checkout line of Target. The privlage got totally abused by a select few and it got yanked except for senior managers getting 2 days a week.
 
2012-10-08 02:07:07 PM  
Another problem with being set up to work from home is when something catastrophically breaks at work, everyone feels OK texting you while you're on vacation, and they're surprised when you don't respond instantly.
 
2012-10-08 02:07:17 PM  
Ever have that feeling that most people at your job have no idea what you do for a living? Well, guess what, they don't. "Thinking" jobs are quite difficult to measure. It takes a lot of discipline and verification on the part of those doing the measuring. It's quite easy to measure how much time you spend warming a seat.

/problem solved
 
2012-10-08 02:09:42 PM  

the_geek: Ever have that feeling that most people at your job have no idea what you do for a living? Well, guess what, they don't. "Thinking" jobs are quite difficult to measure. It takes a lot of discipline and verification on the part of those doing the measuring. It's quite easy to measure how much time you spend warming a seat.

/problem solved


The flip side is mostly true too. Sure, I understand what my 'team' does and there is typically direct communication with one or two other teams.....the rest? No f***ing clue.
 
2012-10-08 02:12:32 PM  
I have no choice but to work from home on mondays and fridays (work 150 miles away tue/wen/thur). I would prefer being in an office collaborating with people, the days i work from home I get up at 8am and work/drink coffee without a shower or whatever. Just feels weird. Sometimes I get a lot done from home, but sometimes the distractions are just too much. Definitely looking forward to next year when we'll be done commuting and have an office in my city. I would like the option to work from home once in a while, but its not my preferred environment.

That, and I miss being around people. I'm home alone plenty, even if my co-workers drive me insane its still better than being home with my cat 24x7.
 
2012-10-08 02:16:15 PM  
Honestly, there's plenty of times where having somebody right next to you is helpful. I used to have a boss who worked from home all the time, and it was cool because I could duck out early or whatever, but it was frustrating when I needed him to run interference against other people in the office, and my only way to get hold of him was an email that he wouldn't see until he took his break after the 9th hole.
 
2012-10-08 02:18:27 PM  

kab: Working from home, getting a kick, etc.

Helps save a good chunk of change, that much is certain.


Me too

In my underwear. You?

// Send pics
 
2012-10-08 02:25:25 PM  

Slives: Sometimes there are personal reasons for choosing to not telecommute. In my case, I could be 100% work at home, but with a stay at home wife and 2 kids in the house, it is not a good work environment.
With kids that want to check in on dad all the time and a wife that has admitted she gets frustrated when watching the kids while I 'just sit up there on the computer' while working.

So it is a lot safer for me and my marriage to get out of the house to work.



I'm 100% for allowing all employees to telecommute, but I totally get you here.  My business is just me and my business partner.  No employees.  I was single (now married, but no kids).  I absolutely want to work from home, and do. 
 
He couldn't handle it with young kids growing up and the wife.  So we got a small office for him (and its nice to have a real address and not his house, just looks more professional even though we haven't had a physical meeting with partners/clients in years.)
 
Also, in my case... I'm lucky to have an upstairs office.  So I have the separation between work and life.  Yeah, smartphones and laptops with wi-fi and all that... but there's something to be said for "I'm downstairs, I'm not at work."
 
2012-10-08 02:25:37 PM  
I've tried to telecommunte as much as I can. I do onsite tech support for a bank, and my coverage area is about 110 miles in every direction and includes 75 branches, one office with 400 people and one office with 45. I'll get up in the morning, get on remote access, check my calls for the day, answer e-mails, order replacement equipment for what I used the previous day, check on the status of equipment orders, then I go in, load the car, go from branch to branch, and head home after my last call. Sometimes I get home at 2pm, sometimes 9 pm, but it averages out to 50 hours a week.

At least one day a week, I'll stay at home most or all of the day working on reports and data entry for various projects we're working on, and one day a week, I'll go into the shop and do nothing but repairs and inventory management.

Really, I'm getting the best of both worlds. But if there was some way for me to load software for the PCs here at home, and they would let me get equipment delivered to my house, I figure I would only need to go in about once every 2 weeks. But there's this idea that I have to be in an office at all times, even though my job entails me being outside of that office 80% of the time.
 
2012-10-08 02:32:08 PM  

RumsfeldsReplacement: Ahh, the thread where everyone talks about how much smarter he is than his boss and how he should get paid more than his boss and the only reason his boss is the boss is because of buzzwords and how he could totally use buzzwords just as well, but it's beneath him and that's why he'll never be the boss. It's the system's fault.



The Peter Principle is still alive and well in most large companies.
 
2012-10-08 02:33:04 PM  

slayer199: TFA is spot on. It's management. Something that wasn't mentioned is that there are political reasons for keeping people in the office.


I'm a manager and I completely disagree. Unless you have it ingrained in your culture that people will not be in the office and develop the tools to support it - telecommuting simply won't work. That takes leadership and many have failed trying to change such a culture.

/one of my employees is moving to 100% telecommuting and I fully support it
//it will make my job a little harder but that is what I get paid to do
 
2012-10-08 02:37:22 PM  

Aarontology: It was less about IT security as it was about some dumbass leaving the company laptop at a cafe. No information got out as far as I know, but they got super paranoid after that.


Bullshiat. Its a general rule of thumb that at least 10% of laptops are lost every year due to theft, taxies, left on planes, hotel pools, etc. If your organization does not have the tools to deal with that - they are completely incompetent.

/IT Security Manager
 
2012-10-08 02:37:59 PM  

Bonkthat_Again: FTA:
"Who makes the policy on working from home? Bosses do, and bosses need conference rooms to herd people into for unnecessary meetings. Bosses need everyone in that conference room looking attentive as they go through their latest list of impossible goals and unspecific ideas on achieving those impossible goals. If this same unnecessary discussion takes place through a conference call with everyone calling in from home, one person will be making the call while watching a Hoarders marathon. Another will be painting her toes. Another will be cleaning the cat box, and still another will be closing his sleepy eyes and grunting agreement when it appears necessary. Ultimately those employees will probably be just as productive, but in this scenario, the manager's power is diminished. On a conference call where everyone is at home, no one is staring up at the boss in search of "direction." Without that hierarchical structure, the fact that he and his bosses get paid much more for contributing far less becomes easier to see (and prove). "

I think he nailed it right on the head.


I work from home, as does everyone else in my company, and we still have plenty of unnecessary meetings.

That being said, I will never work in an office again if I can avoid it. I love working from home. I get to see my son and my wife whenever I want, I don't have to get all dressed up like I'm going to Wal-Mart or something, and I save a ton of money on gas and lunch.
 
2012-10-08 02:38:04 PM  

tricycleracer: A couple bad apples here got telecommuting shut down completely.

If you're "working from home", don't take your family to Disney World.


Why not? Then again my kid was 3 and after a day at the park crashed around 6:30 and I just worked for about 4 hours while the wife and I enjoyed some cocktails on the patio of the hotel.

But then again if I say I'm going to meet a deadline I mean I'm going to meet a deadline.

I get far more work done at home where I can concentrate without having boss/co-workers pop in every 5 seconds to "chat" AND I can give you 90 more minutes of work since I can cut out the commute.
 
2012-10-08 02:38:50 PM  
Because hanging out in the same place every single day interacting solely via a phone and computer is depressing to most normal people.
 
2012-10-08 02:42:32 PM  

poot_rootbeer: Most policymakers assume that anybody who's permitted to "work from home" will spend their days the same way they would: about an hour a day of trying to seem responsive, and seven hours of masturbating themselves raw.


Which is why policy makers have offices w/doors.
 
2012-10-08 02:47:26 PM  

gingerjet: slayer199: TFA is spot on. It's management. Something that wasn't mentioned is that there are political reasons for keeping people in the office.

I'm a manager and I completely disagree. Unless you have it ingrained in your culture that people will not be in the office and develop the tools to support it - telecommuting simply won't work. That takes leadership and many have failed trying to change such a culture.

/one of my employees is moving to 100% telecommuting and I fully support it
//it will make my job a little harder but that is what I get paid to do


I see the young bucks being against telecommuting because 'networking' and 'askissing' are required workshops at MBA school.

/seriously, how would they get promoted if they were not buttering up the boss everyday?
 
2012-10-08 02:48:04 PM  

SacriliciousBeerSwiller: Because hanging out in the same place every single day interacting solely via a phone and computer is depressing to most normal people.


This pretty much described my life in the down town cube farm offices over the past decade.
Howeve, now both Lady Buk and I work from home. We have coffee, watch TV on our lunch, get pestered by the cats in the afternoon, and watch the sunset together from our floor to ceiling windows.
 
2012-10-08 02:51:21 PM  

Bonkthat_Again: Another will be cleaning the cat box


Holy crap, I forgot to clean the cat box before I left for work this morning.

/Now I can't focus on work.
//Not that I was really focusing on work anyway.
 
2012-10-08 02:56:34 PM  

Bukharin: SacriliciousBeerSwiller: Because hanging out in the same place every single day interacting solely via a phone and computer is depressing to most normal people.

This pretty much described my life in the down town cube farm offices over the past decade.
Howeve, now both Lady Buk and I work from home. We have coffee, watch TV on our lunch, get pestered by the cats in the afternoon, and watch the sunset together from our floor to ceiling windows.


I think it really has a lot more to do with what "work" is.

If I have 2-3 days straight of working from home i'll do a morning or an afternoon at a coffee shop or other location unless I have a conference call. I know some people could not do that as they HAVE to be available by phone, but I have 5 distinct non phone ways of being contacted and since my company and my client are spread all over the globe that is usually the perfered method. (I can send you an email any time without having to calculate your time zone and figure out if you might be sleeping/lunching/or other wise occupied).

I like hitting the office as well where I can have face to face chats and have a happy hour with co workers/friends.

But then I also like "Chicken Nugget Fridays" eating lunch with my 4 year old.
 
2012-10-08 02:57:59 PM  

Bonkthat_Again: FTA:
"Who makes the policy on working from home? Bosses do, and bosses need conference rooms to herd people into for unnecessary meetings. Bosses need everyone in that conference room looking attentive as they go through their latest list of impossible goals and unspecific ideas on achieving those impossible goals. If this same unnecessary discussion takes place through a conference call with everyone calling in from home, one person will be making the call while watching a Hoarders marathon. Another will be painting her toes. Another will be cleaning the cat box, and still another will be closing his sleepy eyes and grunting agreement when it appears necessary. Ultimately those employees will probably be just as productive, but in this scenario, the manager's power is diminished. On a conference call where everyone is at home, no one is staring up at the boss in search of "direction." Without that hierarchical structure, the fact that he and his bosses get paid much more for contributing far less becomes easier to see (and prove). "

I think he nailed it right on the head.


verydemotivational.files.wordpress.com
 
2012-10-08 03:00:19 PM  
I'm a real estate appraiser and figured this out the first day i bought an epson digital(1998-9) camera that could take 26 pic's.

Really took off when i could just pdf something to a client and they finally knew what a pdf is/was.

I pretty much sit in my underwear depending on how cold it is until around 2pm when i check my fancy P.O. box address that actually says suite # instead of P.O. box because for some reason banks liked to see that and i didn't want angry customer's showing up to my house.

Right now my pregnant wife and I are about to go for a drive, take some photo's for new construction on a lake in oklahoma, then drive back to tulsa inspect a forelcosed duplex.

Tomorrow, i'll leave the house early measure 3-4 houses, get a friend of mine out of jail since he's been in there since Sept 30th and his attorney couldn't get his bail lowered until Tuesday, (He's black in a small town in Oklahoma they don't really move to quickly to get bond lowered requests for his kind around here)

Then on Wednesday & thursday i'll sit at home all day typing listening to music drinking beer and smoking pot, and when i'm finished with the reports I upload them to a website never having contact with anyone, but the person who is letting me into the house.

It's beautiful and i love it.

Plus you make 6 figures a year while your in your underwear for at least 150 days of it.
 
2012-10-08 03:05:01 PM  
To put it simply.

Most bosses do not trust you to be actually working at home.

I know I would trust maybe 1 or 2 out of the 6 person team I work with to actually work while they are home.
 
2012-10-08 03:09:53 PM  

thomps: Bonkthat_Again: FTA:
"Who makes the policy on working from home? Bosses do, and bosses need conference rooms to herd people into for unnecessary meetings. Bosses need everyone in that conference room looking attentive as they go through their latest list of impossible goals and unspecific ideas on achieving those impossible goals. If this same unnecessary discussion takes place through a conference call with everyone calling in from home, one person will be making the call while watching a Hoarders marathon. Another will be painting her toes. Another will be cleaning the cat box, and still another will be closing his sleepy eyes and grunting agreement when it appears necessary. Ultimately those employees will probably be just as productive, but in this scenario, the manager's power is diminished. On a conference call where everyone is at home, no one is staring up at the boss in search of "direction." Without that hierarchical structure, the fact that he and his bosses get paid much more for contributing far less becomes easier to see (and prove). "

I think he nailed it right on the head.

i think that's a really myopic view. probably about half of my company telecommutes, and we still have a very well-defined hierarchy (although i will admit that it is flatter than most). the real problem we see as we have shifted to more telecommuting is an erosion of our company culture. a lot of our new hires that telecommute never seem to develop any sort of bond with the broader company and attrition among that group is much higher.


Perhaps your company is different, but in my experience a company never bothers to form a bond with the employee, and will get rid of them as soon as they can (reducing expenses is more important than keeping knowledgeable people around). So I don't see why an employee should put more effort into it.
 
2012-10-08 03:18:37 PM  

meat0918: To put it simply.

Most bosses do not trust you to be actually working at home.

I know I would trust maybe 1 or 2 out of the 6 person team I work with to actually work while they are home.


So you hired people you can't trust?
 
2012-10-08 03:20:33 PM  

meat0918: To put it simply.

Most bosses do not trust you to be actually working at home.

I know I would trust maybe 1 or 2 out of the 6 person team I work with to actually work while they are home.


I hardly work when I'm at work.
 
2012-10-08 03:21:02 PM  
I was working from home until my company decided it was too hip to have its new software work on PCs.
 
2012-10-08 03:25:17 PM  
I worked for a company that once you got high enough up in the manager food chain, you worked from home. This basically meant taking phone calls about problems and visiting physical locations a couple times a month. One guy, delegated all of his calls/trips to lower managers. Then he got another job.... He didn't quit 'our' company, just went to work at his other job and let the checks keep rolling in from 'our' company... I think he made it about a year before they caught on. Company tried to sue him, court said basically 'you can't sue somebody because you're too stupid to run your own company.'
/CSB
 
2012-10-08 03:27:55 PM  
It's more easy to intimidate subordinates in person.
 
2012-10-08 03:28:57 PM  
Management just gets better "warm & fuzzies" having people onsite.

Or if they can continually track your status constantly...like on Lync, then they're good with that.
 
2012-10-08 03:42:55 PM  
I'm not so sure that the Internet really has enabled all that many people to telecommute. Office workers, yes, but I'm forced to wonder: just how much of the population do they really make up?

/office worker
//not allowed to telecommute T_T
 
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