Maybe Telecommuting Just Isn't Meant To Be

from the need-that-bridge dept

For years and years, we've discussed various trends in telecommuting, noting earlier this year that high gas prices and public transit strikes might help push the trend even further. However, the problems of telecommuting continue to mean that it's just not for everyone. The NY Times notes that, even in the transit strike last week, many workers who could have telecommuted preferred to brave the cold and go into the office. There are a variety of reasons given -- from the traditional need for "face time" to the basic separation between home and work life. For many, it appears, the "commute" is more than just the function of getting from home to the office and back again, but a mental separator to keep work out of home life. That's one issue that's not so easy to break down with technology. Still, it will be interesting to see if that's more a generational issue. I would imagine that today's multi-tasking, instant-messaging, text-messaging, listening-to-music, watching-tv, surfing-the-web all at once kids might not have as much need to separate home life from work life.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  1. identicon
    Mousky, 27 Dec 2005 @ 11:26am

    Observations and Comments

    After reading the comments, I offer the following observations and questions.

    1. Some telecommuters end up working an extra 2 hours a day because they are not commuting to and from work. Does that mean you only work 4 days a week? Do you get a credit for those additional 2 hours?

    2. One person says they are very productive at home, however, they have to work late into the evening. If you are so productive, why do you need to work late into the evening. Being productive means that you should be spending less time on tasks.

    3. Continuing with productivity, some people are only productive at home because they have created a space, aka an office, preferably with a door, in their home, that lets them shut out the rest of the world (including the home world). Perhaps if businesses built more offices and less cubicles in the workplace, productivity would increase.

    4. Naturally, with little to no distractions, one is more productive, but some of the people citing the lack of distractions as a positive also spend some time in a real office. I guess it depends on the nature of the business, but it sounds like that some face to face time is required in order to be a successful telecommuter.

    By no means am I condoning telecommuting. If done properly, it can be a very productive choice. Given that telecommuters tend to be people with a better-than-average high-tech knowledge, I would expect the comments on this forum to be biased in favor of telecommuting. Not saying that is a bad thing, but one has to consider all issues and viewpoints. Enjoy your virtual trip to work and back ;)

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Discord

The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...

Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.