This group is for teleworkers and telework managers…and anyone else who is interested in discussing telework!
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The Fed Coach Has It Right About Telework
July 16, 2010 at 12:29 am #105793
Reprinted from The Washington Post | By Tom Fox | July 7, 2010
Sometimes the sign of good leadership is an ability to see challenges as opportunities rather than roadblocks to success.
Case in point: telework
It can be tempting for a manager to assume that workers who are not present are not productive. One agency head recently told a colleague: “People come to the office and do nothing. I want those kinds of employees inconvenienced by having to come into the office. I don’t want them working in the comfort of their homes.” [read more…]
What about your examples? Have you seen effective telework in action? What problems have you encountered either as a federal manager or an active teleworkers? What pitfalls need to be avoided in order to implement a successful teleworking program?
July 16, 2010 at 1:24 am #105797
I work at a small agency and have seen telework become more successful after managers were pressured by the senior leadership to allow most employees to telework. As with any change management attempt it takes time and commitment to make it work. The pressure has been increased by adding a performance measure for the SES on the percentage of teleworkers doing recurring (scheduled at least one day a pay period). We also had two senior 15s assigned to the front office to telework 2 days a week to show it was supported. Our goal is to have everyone who wants to telework, to do it at least one day a pay period. I think it will take some time for both workers and managers to make it work out effectively.
July 16, 2010 at 9:57 am #105795
The organization(s) that I have been involved with over the past 15 years has had various branches involved in various flavor(s) of teleworking. Everything from 1 or 2 days a pay period to actually assignment of worker’s domicile as their office with the supervisor working hundreds of miles away.
A clear expectation of work accomplishment by all , is a critical requirement for a successful telework relationship. There MUST be trust between the worker and the leaders. AND it must go both ways, The leaders generally need to adhere to the “trust but verify” mindset and the teleworkers need to understand why the “trust but verify” is employed.
Another issue, that I have seen, senior management must believe that the program is going to improve the Return on Investment (ROI). Generally speaking the improved morale of the employees will do very little for the ROI, at least as far as most managers are concerned. Things like more productive time, less office space requirements, and recently the “green footprint”
Another issue that comes up is teleworking is NOT very everyone, nor every position; Supervisors, usually through a lack of communications, will treat teleworking as a way to reward the employee, with all the inherent risks involved (favoritism claims, etc.) The reverse, denying teleworking as a means of punishment, is in MY OPINION, even more grievous. Supervisors must take the time and effort to explain to some employees why teleworking is not a good option for the organization for an employee who is denied the opportunity to telework.
As @Steve says: Everyone must Believe! and IMO must believe that it is good for the organization not just be going through motions with the attitude “This too shall pass”
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