Thursday, November 6, 2008

Simple Steps for Managers

Because I am an employee who telecommutes, I most often worry only about how you, my fellow mortal, can get out of the office and into some slippers. But maybe, just maybe, some of my gentle readers are managers who want to offer this awesome benefit to your employees.

To you I say: Kudos!

And check out this checklist from the government telework people. The steps they outline here really are the basis of good telecommuting management, and aspiring to these guidelines might help you avoid some problems as you roll out your telecommuting plans to your employees.

I really like this: "Base denials on business reasons." Just like I continually harp on employees to steer clear of heartfelt explanations of how they have no daycare for little Susie, or Grandpa Ulee is too addled to be left home alone, managers, too, should avoid any whiff of the personal when denying (or approving) telecommuting arrangements.

This isn't to say that when an employee's personal problems are interfering with their productivity that you shouldn't deal with that (whether the person works in the Real Office or in slippers). It just means that you should focus on the "you're not getting work done" part, rather than the "it pisses me off that I know you're throwing laundry in during the work day and I just feel like that's wrong even though you're getting more done than ever for us here in the office".

You ultimately have to trust your employees and be comfortable measuring results rather than time elapsed.

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