[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Edlug Archive Apr 2004
Re: [edlug] teleworking
> I'm curious to know: how many teleworkers are there on this list?
I was one. I got fired after 3 months teleworking when there was a
financial crisis. (A few crucial people were pretty hostile to
teleworking.) Basically you become very ignorable and disposable.
You have to make a big effort to get in people's faces so they
remember you exist; and work your balls off. The phone is very, very
> I am, for one. I'm a newcomer to Edinburgh and to EDLUG. I used to live
> and work in London but have moved here with my girlfirend, who has a new job
> at the university. I work for a small company who agreed to let me telework
> from Edinburgh, since replacing me would be rather more exensive and
> inconvenient. It's an experiment, which seems to be going okay so far,
> after a few weeks. The plan is to return to London every month or so for a
> week of face-to-face work, but the rest of the time my office is the sofa in
> a small flat in Newington.
This sounds very familiar!
> I expect one of the biggest challenges will be to avoid getting cabin-fever,
> but another problem is general communications with the other people I'm
> working with. So far we've been getting by okay with MS messenger, CVS and
> TightVNC over an ssh tunnel, a wiki, email and the phone. Net/Gnomemeeting
> doesn't (quite) work both ways, as we have a NAT firewall at both ends and
> no VPN set up yet... but then, video seems more of a distraction than an
> aid. Voice over IP would probably be more useful, if it was simple to use.
I used VPN over smoothwall. It took weeks to set up, because the sysadmin
was being a complete bastard with the personality of Napoleon Bonaparte.
(It was a French company...).
> Any solution will need to be a bit platform-agnostic, since my work requires
> developing in .Net, which I am becoming fairly comfortable with, but I'm
> traditionally much happier using Unix, specifically Linux, and I don't see
> myself ever switching to MS entirely. This is not usually true of the
> people I work with / for, however.
This too sounds familiar. I found it very difficult to work on Windows
machines, not having used them before. I took a windows box up here
and figured out ways I could actually work on my own linux machines,
with minimal use of the windows. It was something that some people
didn't like, that I could work they way I wanted. I'm surprised they
didn't require that I used a particular brand of pencil/paper too... .
> It's not just a technological problem either. It's a social and management
> issue, too, and we'll need to change the way we work. There are some
> interesting suggestions on http://www.fastnloose.com/cgi-bin/wiki.pl/dad,
> which I've not had time to read thoroughly yet.
You seem to be anticipating the problems.
> So, do any of you telework, or know of any teleworking interest groups,
> especially any in the Edinburgh area?
My wife also teleworks. She spends about 75% of the day on the phone.
She has the skin of a rhinocerous, which is an important and very
valuable attribute when you are ringing people up.
She doesn't like it. She keeps saying she wants to work in a proper
office, with proper gossip. Mind you, she's English. There are a
couple of others from her company in Edinburgh. They meet in the
flesh eand have a blether every few weeks, but its not enough.
Best of luck. You have to make it work yourself: don't expect them
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