Working Remotely

Yan Lhert has drawn a line in the sand: He will no longer accept jobs that don’t allow him to work remotely. Working remotely is popular these days and many people extol its virtues. Those virtues often include something that involves a beach or Thailand but Lhert isn’t interested in any of that. He simply wants to work efficiently.

Lhert has two problems with “working at the office.” The first—and probably most serious—is the disaster masquerading as a fad known as open offices. Almost all startups, Lhert says, have bought into the myth of improved communication and an open and transparent culture offered by open offices. Of course, that’s nonsense as many many studies have shown. As Lhert says, “You don’t have to look far to find plenty of research on the subject—and quite frankly, there is simply no debate here.” Irreal, always at its most cynical on this subject, has long suspected that the real reasons for the popularity of open offices among management have more to do with the price of real estate and the bottom line.

The other reason for Lhert’s insisting on working remotely is working hours. Like many of us, Lhert is not a morning person and simply can’t work up to his potential when forced to get to work at 9 am. He much prefers to follow his own circadian rhythm and work from, say, 11 am to 10 pm. He’s happier and more efficient and everyone benefits. Everyone, that is, but the micromanaging control freaks that simply have to know where he is and what he’s doing while he’s working. By working remotely, he gets to control his own working hours.

It’s an interesting post and most of us in the software industry will find it enjoyable. Even if you’re simply working from home and not from an exotic location, working remotely can make a lot of sense for both you and your employer.

UPDATE [2016-12-24 Sat 13:00]: you’re → your

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