SMB Magazine spoke out in her most recent article stating, "As someone who makes a living via working out of her home office, I was honestly appalled by this decision. I voiced my displeasure on my Facebook page, sharing an article on this subject in which I stated: “This is bad for business, bad for morale, and promotes an unhealthy work-life balance.”
So has Yahoo!'s battle been all rosy? Let's look at their history- Yahoo! grew rapidly throughout the 1990s. Like many search engines and web directories, Yahoo! added a web portal. It also made many high-profile acquisitions. Its stock price skyrocketed during the dot-com bubble, Yahoo! stocks closing at an all-time high of $118.75 a share on January 3, 2000. However, after the dot-com bubble burst, it reached a post-bubble low of $4.05 on September 26, 2001. In the years that followed things steadily went down hill. The company struggled through 2008, with several large layoffs.
Business Insider had a FANTASTIC presentation which depicted the future of work place, and "the death of the office as we know it". I am lucky to long be a part of a company who not only utilizes these techniques, but helps to create it. Every company has a bell curve of employees, although many wonderful, there are always a few bad apples. These poor employee can lurk in a cubicle or in their home... it is my opinion, coming to an office does not make you committed. I personally am committed regardless of my location, as many of my colleagues and customers are as well. Those who are dedicated can be so regardless of their location. I have personal bias, as I worked in one of our biggest Cisco campus offices for 8 years, before I moved to work remotely and telecommute for the past year. Upon recent reviews with my manager and his compliments in regards to his views and my customer's annual review I realize that if you are passionate and dedicated then it should not and will not matter where you are, and your level of productivity will be 100%. My customers work all over the United States, the cost of flying to see them would be unparalleled, yet I am readily available to be their direct liaison to our customer day or night (or late night) as needed. Utilizing the very tools we have helped to build, partner or acquire from Web Ex to Telepresence, IP Telephony to e-mails care of our Routing and Switching, right down to my Linksys wireless router and everything in between. Many of my clients do not know where I work, many don't even know I moved unless we mention it in conversation, and those who do know, do not care because my level of relationship support has not faltered. I feel my work life balance has improved, and my productivity has been enhanced due to my ability to not take time away commuting and things of that nature. But, don't take my word for it, let's look at some studies and facts.
Not having to drive your car to work on a daily basis can help you save money in other ways, too. For example, you likely won't have the number of miles of wear-and-tear on your car. You might also save on parking expenses. Additionally, you might not spend as much on clothing or dry cleaning; and instead of going out to eat, you even might eat lunch more frugally from your own kitchen, and have healthier options to boot!
British Research Study six out of 10 workers said their time management skills, mental performance and ability to meet deadlines improved on days when they exercised. The amount of the overall performance boost was about 15 percent, according to the findings, which were presented this month at a meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine in Nashville, Tenn. "The people who exercised went home feeling more satisfied with their day," says study author Jim McKenna, a professor of physical activity and health at Leeds Metropolitan University in the U.K.
Boosts Productivity: Many employees feel that they could be more productive outside of the office -- away from distractions such as that "chatty cathy" cubicle colleague or the social aspect of the office. "The one reason that is most surprising is that employees want to do this (telecommute) because they are frustrated by how difficult it is to do their work in the office," according to the Wilsker survey.
For many companies it can affect their bottom line. Per Cisco case study in June 2009 titled " Cisco Study Finds Telecommuting Significantly Increases Employee Productivity, Work-Life Flexibility and Job Satisfaction". Cisco conducted the survey in late 2008 to evaluate a number of telecommuting topics, including commuting patterns, technology barriers, work quality and productivity, environmental impacts, and advantages and disadvantages of the flexible lifestyle, as well as overall employee satisfaction.
1,992 Cisco employees across five regions (Asia Pacific, emerging markets, European markets, Japan and U.S./Canada) participated in the study. The summary of that survey is Cisco is achieving new levels of efficiency and effectiveness by enabling people to work together no matter where they are located. In fact, according to Cisco's Internet Business Services Group, the company's global strategic consulting arm, the company has generated an estimated annual savings of $277 million in productivity by allowing employees to telecommute and telework. In addition, with the steady adoption of enterprise-class remote connectivity solutions like Cisco® Virtual Office, the recently announced Cisco OfficeExtend, and virtual collaboration tools like Cisco WebExTM, Cisco anticipates that employees and employers will continue to see a rise in the benefits associated with telecommuting.
Cisco's Next-Generation Workforce
- Cisco employees spend about 63 percent of their time communicating and collaborating.
- 40 percent of Cisco employees say they are not located in the same city as their manager.
- The average Cisco employee now telecommutes 2.0 days per week.
- 60 percent of the time saved by telecommuting is spent working and 40 percent is spent on personal time.
- Approximately 69 percent of the employees surveyed cited higher productivity when working remote, and 75 percent of those surveyed said the timeliness of their work improved.
- By telecommuting, 83 percent of employees said their ability to communicate and collaborate with co-workers was the same as, if not better than, it was when working on-site.
- 67 percent of survey respondents said their overall work quality improved when telecommuting.
- An improved quality of life through telecommuting was cited by 80 percent of survey respondents.
- Telecommuting can also lead to a higher employee retention rate, as more than 91 percent of respondents say telecommuting is somewhat or very important to their overall satisfaction.
Cisco Video Story
CompTIA's "Advancing Women in IT Community Council" , and a new step mom I will say it goes even deeper than that for many working mothers (and fathers). Despite being the first woman to become CEO of a Fortune 500 company while pregnant, Marissa Mayer is facing some particularly vocal criticism on parenting and "mommy" blogs for not understanding the plight of the working mother, according to Business Insider. Many of the comments that impacted me the most were: "Dare I say that for a company trying desperately to innovate, Mayer’s ordering workers back to work seems neither progressive, inspiring or smart" Denene Millner at mybrownbaby.com wrote.Sara Welch at the BabyCenter blog stated, "I had high hopes that a young, female CEO — one who was openly pregnant when she signed on for the job — would bring a fresh perspective and some more, well, trailblazing. This move seems completely out of touch with the modern workplace — one, I might add, that makes no bones of invading almost every second of life via blackberries, laptops and cell phones.Worse, it is totally out of touch with the very stretched lives of the vast majority of working parents who don’t have the benefit of a $300 million cash cushion and all of the work-life support that kind of money can buy." And from a blog post at phdinparenting.com: "... Maybe it's just me, but a technology company that insists collaboration can only happen in person is an obsolete technology company"
Carina Reyes, manager, Operations, Cisco had this to say about her lifestyle at our company:
"As a working mother of three children, I know firsthand the benefits of Cisco Virtual Office. Through high-quality voice and video, I remain engaged and able to lead global teams and programs with ease and avoid back and forth trips to the office. The seamless transition from work to the home has given me the flexibility to choose the schedule that best fits my work and my home. Juggling early-morning Europe calls, midday doctor's appointments and evening Asia meetings, I move with ease from one place to another. My family and I feel fortunate that I work for one of the best companies today that enables true work-life navigation."
In my humble opinion, in this ever modernized knowledge-based economy, what is important is getting the job done, not when, or where.
** This article represents my personal opinion, supported by research and studies**