Are You Ready To Change Your Work Environment?

  • Steve Jones - SSC Editor

    SSC Guru

    Points: 719984

  • David.Poole

    SSC Guru

    Points: 75367

    For me working from home has been a time of healing.  There has been a few years of turmoil both professionally and personally.  The quiet time without distractions has been therapeutic.

    I'm lucky in that the standard of equipment provided to me is excellent and the company is well geared up to support remote work.  I think your previous editorials have made a crucial point.  Working from home during lockdown is not the same as working from home.

    I think I should like to work more from home but would like to go into an office once or twice a week.  I was having trouble with social isolation working in a new office before lockdown.  Ironically over the past few weeks I have had more face to face communication (albeit by Zoom, Teams etc) than I ever would have in the office.

    When the offices reopen I think the hybrid nature of things will raise some challenges.  When we all work remotely we all face the same constraints.  Chance conversations around the coffee machine/water cooler don't take place though some pretty random conversations happen during online coffee breaks.  The fear is that in a hybrid scenario it becomes out-of-site out-of-mind.  Opportunities and promotions go to the people who are highly visible.

    If lockdown persists then the sort of work I do is easy to carry on remote working indefinitely.  I would be more nervous if I was management grade.  The managers who were good at managing offshore teams are those with an advantage.  Managers need considerable adjustments to their skillsets.  I think it will be far harder for poor managers to hide behind corporate bureaucracy.

     

  • Doctor Who 2

    SSCertifiable

    Points: 7868

    My view on this subject has not changed. I am telecommuting for the first time, and I want to continue to do so.

    Rod

  • Jeff Moden

    SSC Guru

    Points: 996669

    I used to work from home in the mornings, work in the office from about noon to 8 (and not get much done because of all the "drive by shootings"), and then sometimes go home to work some more.

    I'm loving this full time work from home and the isolation and the long periods of undisturbed work.  It's amazing what you can actually get done.  I still find the PM's and (especially) the mandatory Team meetings to be tedious and usually unproductive at best and seriously annoying at worst.  I don't need to be told to "stay safe" and how to "stay hydrated" nor solve cross word puzzles and other stupid things with my team mates.  Our jobs provide the necessary interaction and, personally, that's all I need.

    I hope they let me continue this after things settle down because I'm enjoying the hell out of it.

    --Jeff Moden


    RBAR is pronounced "ree-bar" and is a "Modenism" for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
    First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
    ________Stop thinking about what you want to do to a ROW... think, instead, of what you want to do to a COLUMN.
    "Change is inevitable... change for the better is not".
    "If "pre-optimization" is the root of all evil, then what does the resulting no optimization lead to?"

    Helpful Links:
    How to post code problems
    How to Post Performance Problems
    Create a Tally Function (fnTally)

  • latkinson

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1274

    As annoying and loud as the office environment can be, I never thought I would actually miss that background noise. I see the drive to and from the office as a transition between work and home. Working from home, its incredibly hard to make that transition, since the computer is right there.

    That being said, there are days when I definitely can profit by working from home, so I want to continue in some hybrid of both once the lockdowns are lifted. I claim to be introverted and asocial (not to be confused with anti-social) but I've found over the years, that without an occasional "people" fix, my attitude goes into a serious spiral downward and takes a while to come back up. Video chat can help, but its no substitute for in person interaction.

    Luther

  • pwhoyt

    SSC Enthusiast

    Points: 157

    I've been working from home for 15 years at my current employer.  This entire COVID situation hasn't changed my work-life one bit.

    Due to the geographic distribution of the people I work with, we'd all still be "remote" no matter where we physically sit.

    I wouldn't work for a company that made me commute to an office.  No way.

  • Ralph Hightower

    SSCrazy

    Points: 2804

    Working in the office has some advantages. Before our governor ordered state employees to work from home, I given an assignment to complete a project that had been started, but then suspended. I encountered the same roadblock that caused the developer to put the project on hold. My proposal, sent via email, to add rows to various tables got shot down without explanation. It took a conference call for others to realize that I was on the right track. This week-long delay could've been solved in a day in an office environment.

    Working from home also has its advantages, when everything works right. In April, South Carolina got hit with a string of tornadoes. While there were no touchdowns in the county where I live in and the storms were not severe, I did lose power twice for about an hour with each outage the day after the tornadoes. After the second outage, my cable/internet didn't come back until the next day. Fortunately, I have a Verizon MiFi and was able to connect to work after the second outage.

    I also find the commute listening (while listening to classic rock), like latkinson, marks the transition between work and home. It's hard to turn off work when working from home. One thing I don't miss is when my next door cube neighbor starts humming. But there is a noise distraction at home right now; an army of landscapers have their leaf blowers, string trimmers, and mowers going at the subdivision across the street from me.

    I'm taking breaks to spend time with our dogs. One of our 11 year-olds has an aggressive form of cancer. Surgery removed the tumor, but clean margins were not guaranteed.  Without radiation, which starts next week, he could have a few months.

    I am getting two to three weeks per 13 gallons of gas versus one week with 13 gallons.

    One other thing, I started physical therapy in March after the lockdown started, so that allows some social interaction. My daily pain level went from a 6 to a 0 with an occasional 2.

  • Steve Jones - SSC Editor

    SSC Guru

    Points: 719984

    Sorry about your dog, Ralph. I hope he does well with treatment.

  • Ralph Hightower

    SSCrazy

    Points: 2804

    Steve Jones - SSC Editor wrote:

    Sorry about your dog, Ralph. I hope he does well with treatment.

    Thanks Steve.  Zeus has the same cancer that his mother, Sweetheart, had; his sister, Athena, should finish up chemo this August for thyroid cancer. I hope their brother, Apollo, who is owned by our vet, doesn't get cancer.

  • call.copse

    SSCoach

    Points: 17186

    I've done it before and haven't really liked it; by necessity I've got into the swing a bit and I'm wondering where I'd fit all that commuting time and water cooler chat in when I go back. I like having radio playing and being able to make a nice fresh lunch easily. I'm under huge stress right now and although the long meetings are necessary and can be aurally arduous, overall I think it's a win.

  • john.billman

    Newbie

    Points: 2

    I'm enjoying my alone time (I'm more an introvert) and would prefer the ability to work from home more often.  Still, I would want to have some days in the office.

    In reality, there is a certain "out of sight, out of mind" aspect to work.  I know it's politics, but that's the reality.  However, this COVID-19 time will be changing that perspective a bit.

  • Elfstone

    Grasshopper

    Points: 14

    I've been working from home the last 50 weeks. It suits me, and I also did it for nearly two years before, 2014-2016. That time, however, I was more frequently in the offices of clients. Haven't done work away from home since November. While (relative) isolation and quiet don't bother me much, I find myself missing some interactions. And, I miss how easy it was to get a burger or something without all the "work" involved in going out.

  • -=JLK=-

    Valued Member

    Points: 63

    This is my first time doing telework full time.  It's been just over a month and we have one more month to go.  It has worked out so well that management is adjusting the telework policy to allow up-to three days a week telework with manager approval after we go back.

    I'm really liking this as it's quite and much more productive, though I haven't found the meetings have gotten any less, actually they have increased.  Management is in love with Zoom, and I have to say that with screen share it does work out for general team collaboration, between that and Visual Studio "live" sharing sessions it is actually better than being in the office where you have to look over someones shoulder.

    I'm voting for continued telework!

    James.

    -=JLK=-
    Theory is when you know something, but it doesn't work.
    Practice is when something works, but you don't know why.
    Programmers combine theory and practice: Nothing works and they don't know why.

  • TUellner

    SSCrazy

    Points: 2578

    I've been working from home 3 days a week for a while before all this started. I have a 90 mile round trip to get into work and I have to say I don't miss that one bit. We also communicated via Skype a lot while in the office so that hasn't changed much. The joking with each other during the day has just moved from in person to Skype. We have plenty of interaction through that. Meetings are taking place via Skype for Business and MS Teams.

    Unlike some, I don't really have a problem when I finish for the day. I may start work a little earlier and end a little later than normal but I'm not wasting 2+ hours commuting so it comes out in the wash. I close the work laptop, switch to my PC with the things I want to work on and I'm done. Take off the DBA / software engineer hat and put on the recording engineer hat, mix some songs and have some fun.

  • Steve Jones - SSC Editor

    SSC Guru

    Points: 719984

    I think the most days at home, some days in the office is a good plan. We may do that at Redgate when things open in the UK, which is fine. I do hope I get to go to all the offices this year, but we'll see.

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