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Working from Home? Not if You’re a Yahoo

I’m sure you’ve all heard about Marissa Mayer and her decision to force Yahoo employees who work from home to start showing up at the office or resign. Her decision, followed by a letter sent to all Yahoo employees, which was also leaked to the press, announced, “To become the absolute best place to work, communication and collaboration will be important, so we need to be working side-by-side. That is why it is critical we are all present in our offices.”

This quote and the reasoning behind it have sparked a heated discussion about the advantages and disadvantages of working from home. It also raised the question of whether face-to-face communication and collaboration is a requirement for innovation and business success.

Well, I think it isn’t a requirement, and I will further discuss why in this post, but I have to mention two things before that. First, at the end of the day, the decision not to allow ANY employee to work from home means closing Yahoo’s eyes and ears to a major trend that has been shaping the labor market across industries and organization. Unlike what Yahoo executives think, ignoring something doesn’t make it go away. Just wait and see. I’m sure that in the near future the company will retract from its bold statement. Second, the main group that will be hurt by this decision is talented women who will not be able to move their families closer to a Yahoo office. One would think that a fellow woman will not help perpetuate male dominance in workplace in general, and in the tech industry in particular.

Now, let’s talk about the link between innovation and working in the office. It is a proven fact that creative thinking is not facilitated by the group. Rather, having time alone to think and concentrate is the ideal setting for coming up with innovative ideas. Furthermore, allowing employees to work from home enables companies to save on operating costs and shift resources saved toward the execution of new and improved strategies, something Yahoo desperately needs. Last but not least, it allows companies to hire better employees that fit the company’s needs, even if the employees are located remotely.

Yahoo’s decision is going against where the business world is heading. I agree that some face-to-face interaction is needed in a huge corporation such as Yahoo, but it does not, by any means, rule out the option of working from home. Claiming that collaboration and communication in this day and age cannot be achieved, other than in the physical offices of a company, is archaic. The fact that this claim is coming from a technology company makes it not only archaic, but also absurd.

Related Posts

Working from Home: Good or Bad?

5 Steps To Create An Ideal Home Office
“There Is No Place like Home” for Your Business
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