INC. DATA BANK Let them wear pajamas
Marissa Mayer told Yahoo employees they couldn’t work from
home because it hurts “speed and quality.” The data begs to
differ. It also suggests that following her lead could cost you—in
productivity, rent, and the happiness of your work force.
More and more
employees are tele-
commuting. If you
don’t offer it as a perk,
they may find another
company that does.
Number of employees
several days a week:
And, no, it’s not
of all workers
want to work
at least part
of the time.
In fact, the majority of telecommuters
The book: Give and Take:
A Revolutionary Approach to
Success, by Adam Grant.
JENNIFER L. GLASS, UNIVERSI TY OF TEXAS;
MAR Y C. NOONAN, UNIVERSI TY OF IOWA
The big idea: Our approach to
we try to seize value from others
or contribute it—greatly influences our likelihood of success.
Those who are generous with
time, connections, and expertise
tend to fare best in their professional lives, so long as they also
hold ambitious goals for advancing their own interests.
…and employees with children are about
as likely to work from home as the
rest of the population is.
77% OF TELECOMMU TERS HAVE CHILDREN
75% OF NONTELECOMMUTERS DO
The backstory: Grant is a rising
star at Wharton, where he is a
1. 5 MILLION
2. 4 MILLION
JENNIFER L. GLASS, UNIVERSI TY OF TEXAS; MAR Y C. NOONAN, UNIVERSI TY OF IO WA
are almost twice
as likely to work
more than 40
hours a week.
JENNIFER L. GLASS, UNIVERSI TY OF TEXAS; MARY C. NOONAN, UNIVERSITY OF IOWA
However, the nature of the work affects productivity.
E. GLENN DUTCHER, UNIVERSI TY OF INNSBRUCK
to 20% more productive
is bad for
are 6% to 10% less productive
than on-site employees
when doing repetitive work.
Another big bonus?
cheaper for you and
$11,000 Your average annual
savings on rent, etc., if an
employee with a telecom-mute-compatible job works
at home half the time
If you read nothing else: Chapter Two recasts networking as a
humanistic enterprise motivated
by kindness rather than a mechanism for getting ahead. Chapter Three explains how great
leaders subdue their egos and
help others achieve greatness,
in the process creating cultures
in which everyone tries harder.
Chapter Seven introduces “
sincerity screening”: assessing the
motives of potential partners,
employees, and others.
$2,000 to $7,000 Amount
each telecommuter saves
annually on transportation
and other expenses
“The people who are allowed to telecommute
now tend to be the oldest, highest paid, and
most trusted employees. I call it the 5 percent
privilege. Businesses need to get past that.”
KATE LISTER, PRESIDENT OF GLOBAL WORKPLACE ANALYTICS
Nice guys: Grant’s gallery of
givers is more accessible than
are the usual business-book
role models. Who wouldn’t at
least try to follow the advice of
Adam Rifkin, a serial entrepreneur who is the most linked-in
person on LinkedIn: “You
should be willing to do something that will take you five
minutes or less for anybody.”
Because of these benefits, experts say entrepreneurs
should let most workers telecommute, not just a select few.
Rigor rating: 9 ( 1=Who Moved
My Cheese?; 10=Good to Great).
Give and Take is exhaustively
reported. And Grant conducted,
with assorted colleagues, an
impressive number of the
original studies cited in the
book. —Leigh Buchanan
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