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Working from Home
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My work is at least partially of a type that I could do working from home: computer, voice phone, fax would allow me to be just as productive as I am sitting behind a desk 15 miles away. I made for myself the reputation of being a "troublemaker" when I proposed a process which would keep the office manned (excuse me, personned) for drop-in requests and at the same time give us 2 or 3 days when we were productive remotely. The keys were the proper technological support and setting up our department in teams of two--one at home, one in the office, backing each other up.

Management was having none of it. How would they know we were really working? What if our manager wanted to call a meeting on the spur of the moment? What if a client needed a face-to-face resolution of an issue?

I answered each concern. The amount of "product" is easily measured. A meeting on the spur of the moment could be held via computer--or, what a concept, scheduled for an hour in the future, allowing travel time from home to office. Nothing was so life-or-death that it couldn't wait an hour. And the same for the client wanting personal service. Plus, there was the other team member to step in, fully briefed.

The *real* reason for the denial, of course, was in the manager's ego. This person needed an entourage, a place to hold court and chauffeurs at a moment's notice to whisk this important personage off to sudden, whimsical events and luncheons. The ego-stroking couldn't happen remotely. It wasn't about being productive; it was about the manager being seen to have many minions.

I still don't care much for minion soup.

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