Blogs of the World II

July 13, 2009 at 1:07 am Leave a comment

I am a fan of two sites with a similar themes and wish in fact that what they were striving for were the status quo instead of the few.  But I notice that the concepts are coming into favor more and more.

The first blog is from Cali and Jody, who wrote a book called Work Sucks and How to Fix It that discusses their concept of ROWE, or the Results Only Work Environment. It’s a fantastic read and is where I learned of their term sludge, which I have used in past posts.  The first company to implement a ROWE was Best Buy and was subsequently profiled in BusinessWeek. Essentially, people work when they need to, not when they have to or because they need to put in their 8 hours, which leads to unproductive websurfing and other time wasters to “put in the time”, otherwise known as presenteeism.  Reminds me of George Costanza and his look-busy-philosophy to appease his bosses.

Right now, the post that has been resonating with me is about summer hours.  I have many different jobs but within one, they have instituted summer hours for the month of June and July.  For these two months, all that is required is that I am available virtually (email or phone) for five hours a week.  I do not need to be in the office at any time for these two months. However, I still go to my office on occasion as I have meetings and other resource needs, and sometimes because I would rather work there than at home. I have noticed that I am almost drowning in sludge by the time I leave by many of the same coworkers who benefit from these summer hours. WHY? I wonder this every time and then decidedly stay away even more to avoid the crush of sludge.  Why is this necessary?  If everyone is doing their respective jobs, the needs of our customers are being met, and objectives are adhered to, why why why?  It just boggles my mind.

The other blog is from Ashley Acker, PhD, who is also a ROWE proponent.  One of her recent posts about onboarding in a virtual world captured my attention as this is a subset of my dissertation topic.  Her goal is to help organizations restyle their culture to be more ROWE-oriented and is grounded in extensive research.

Each of these blogs really speak to me, as I have long been an outspoken proponent of working to your own preferences. I think punching a clock can be absurb as well as having people work certain hours because that’s when you deem they should work. Why not let people work when it is best for them? This may not work in every occupation, but for those that do, why the limitations and the restrictions? I wonder how much control plays a factor into this. Regardless, asking people to work 8-5 every day, even if they prefer working 6-3 or 10-7, or having them do ‘busy work’ to fill an 8-hour day seems oddly ineffective and fiscally wasteful.  We have all worked our share of long days, at home in the evenings after a full day at the office, over the weekend, etc. So don’t you think you will get the time back if, say, a person left at 4 instead of 5 one day?  Just a thought.


Entry filed under: Books, Miscellania, Relationships, Saturation, thoughts, workplace. Tags: , , , , , , , .

Blogs of the world It’s a 2X2 world

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