A Boss’s Point of View: How Telecommuting Works

By Sara Fell, CEO of Flexjobs

On March 5-9 2012, the second annual National Telework Week will begin and companies across the country will participate by allowing their employees to work from home. This is a fantastic opportunity for employees and employers to give telecommuting a trial run! In my own business, my entire staff works from home across the United States and, similar to Barry’s experience working for a U.S. based company from abroad, I also have an employee working from Europe. Here’s my advice on starting a telecommuting program at your company.

So how does telecommuting work?

For starters, communication is key. With regular staff and department meetings weekly, we stay on the same page and constantly strategize for goals. Using JoinMe’s webinar program, our staff logs in at the designated time and we can all view my screen together from the comfort of each of our homes… or coffee shops… or other favorite location.

In addition, we have “watercooler” talk using a site called Yammer, similar to Facebook where we wish one another happy birthday or announce the birth of a child… or maybe just talk about how bad the snow is in Colorado while it’s perfectly sunny for someone that same day in San Diego!

Obviously email is key and of course I am available for phone calls if an employee needs to speak with me. Also, we track projects using Pivotal Tracker so we can keep one another in the loop on the progress of our goals.

What’s interesting to note is most office based jobs implement the same tools! A boss is often behind a closed door and “face time” can be limited to meetings while relying on communication tools similar to the ones I named above. In fact, many office workers already “telecommute” in a sense, but from their cubes.

Read the whole post at A Boss’s Point of View: How Telecommuting Works (Guest Post).


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