Thursday, July 21, 2005
ROWE ROWE ROWE Yer Boat
...When Tobias needs to find people, she checks the whiteboards hanging outside their cubes, where she and her co-workers write down where they are on any given day: "In the office today." "Out of the office this afternoon, available by e-mail." The impromptu meetings are gone, but business done by cell phone is way up. Because she no longer assumes that everyone is around, Tobias makes more of an effort to catch up with her colleagues by phone or e-mail instead of just dropping by someone's office. "You can still have those conversations," she says, just not always in person. She noticed that e-mails have gotten more concise and meaningful, with much less "FYI." And as everyone started to rethink their priorities, guess what fell to the bottom of the list? "We spend a lot less time in meetings," Tobias says. They used to have a two-hour weekly staff meeting that often devolved into chit-chat. Now, if they don't need to meet, they don't.
Best Buy's new results-oriented work environment sounds great to me. I've never been a good 8 to 5er. Just tell me what to do and when it's due. Don't tell me when I have to work on it. I give much better results when I can do it on my schedule.
For more on Best Buy's experiment, read the entire article.