Sunday, May 07, 2006
Suicide By Gasoline Imminent For Corporate Tyrants
Corporate tyrants should have a little talk with their colleagues in the oil industry. Escalating gas prices may force them to sanction telecommuting as an affordable alternative to driving to work. If not, their employees may seek work elsewhere, suggests a recent article in the Christian Science Monitor. Other factors that may spur increased telecommuting include the fear of an avian flu pandemic, transit strikes, and the ever present demands of raising a family. Telecommuters don't work less hard than on-site workers. In fact, they may work harder without the distraction of office chit-chat and superfluous meetings. Telecommuting by its very nature strengthens self-discipline and allows multi-tasking skills to flourish. It might also bring out the entrepreneur in you. After all, if you work off-site, you can work for multiple bosses at the same time and no one would really be the wiser.
It isn't just the price gouging of the oil companies that makes commuting such an ordeal these days. The time and distance required by the average commute are greater than ever. Companies close down and consolidate offices on a regular basis, forcing their employees to adjust to three hour daily commutes - or else quit. Some corporations, like Fidelity Investments of Boston (or, shall we say, soon to be formerly of Boston), use such moves as a passive-aggressive strategy to get employees to leave without explicitly laying them off. Ironically, in the case of Fidelity as well as other companies, this strategy has worked all too well and they are now hurting for people. They will all have to let their employees telecommute sooner or later. It is the coming trend - and in it lie the seeds of our liberation. It will be most amusing someday to see (or at least imagine) the hard-ass managers of, say, Exxon lonesomely cracking their whips at empty cubicles - all because their own company sold its product at too high a price. Revenge is sweetest, my friends, when it is practiced in absentia.
"Gas prices fuel telecommuting" from the Christian Science Monitor