Photo by hllewellyn
Last week our CEO posted an interesting blog post with the title: I’m Not a Remote Worker. He wrote it funnily enough on the Vienna Airport after reading the book Why Managing Sucks and How to Fix It (Thompson, Ressler).
Why do I think that is interesting?
Because it is – by today’s standards – the opposite of common sense. One quote particularly drew my attention: ‘Work is not a place where you go. Work is something you do’. It could be the conclusion of my last post about why work doesn’t happen at work. Although in hindsight I would have called that post ‘Why Work Has Nothing To Do With An Office’. Or ‘The Best Way to Kill Work: Get an Office!’.
‘Not fair! You are not working!’
My ghostwriter often works in coffee bars. At some of those he has to check in on Facebook to get access to the Internet. Often his friends comment on that, “I saw you were in Lokaal Espresso again on Tuesday morning.” Meaning: You are not working; you are drinking coffee. Which is nonsense, not having an office has made him at least twice as productive. For him having an office meant suffering from lazy bastardness and too much distraction. In a way, an office was the opposite of working.
Not having an office has made him twice as productive!
The first Web Robinson
And then there was a story in the Guardian a week ago that proves the point (although they still talk about ‘remote work’ in the article). Frenchman Gauthier Toulemonde took off to a desert island to become the very first ‘Web Robinson’. He wanted to prove that as long as you have a computer and an Internet connection, you can do your work anywhere. So he did.
The worst part of office work: bad coffee
For me it’s strange that this crazy Frenchman and my ghostwriter are the exception. So instead of blaming guys like them for having the best workplaces in the world, think again. Wouldn’t it be better to actually get some work done instead of just getting “face-time” at the office? My tip? Start small; ask for one afternoon every other week. And then prove the point by creating your best work. Which should be easy since you will avoid the dreaded M&M’s!.
But of course, the biggest crime isn’t even that you have to be in an office. It’s the poison they call coffee they serve in most companies. Now that I think about it, my personal experience with coffee in France made me want to flee to a desert island as well…
So tell me, what’s your favorite place to make work happen?
Love and keep up the good work,