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Tele-working Empty Tele-working

Post  Max Fri Sep 14, 2012 11:04 pm

Company came out with a policy a while ago that allows us to work form home one day per month. Not a very big toe in the water, but got me thinking.

How old is social networking? 10 years? We are just not that coomfortable as a society with the idea of going fully digital. I can hear people protesting that we will always need to have an office, since we need face to face contact, and we just wouldn't be as efficient from home. However, there is a whole generation of kids coming who will be totally immersed in the technology, and will be so comfortable with messenging, web-conferencing, etc... that they will not have much trouble operating without ever physically meeting the person on the other end.

Sure, we might always have a need for face to face contact, but the next generation of snot nosed cyber geeks wont. Employers will have to come to a realization at some point that it just doesn't make sense to keep providing office space for these dinosaurs at huge expense, when there are plenty of kids who can work from home just as effectively. More than that, employers will no longer be limited to geographic restrictions.

Why are salaries high in Calgary? Supply vs. demand. There are more jobs than qualified people to fill them. What happens when you can expand your labour market to anywhere in Canada? All of a sudden, you can pay some guy with similar skills in a small town in Northwest Territories half of what you pay someone in Calgary. Also, once the job becomes portable, you can now shop it out anywhere in the world. Imagine. Its tough enough competing with the local labour market. Now you have to compete globally.

The result of this? A mess. I can't fully picture how portability of knowledge workers will play out in the economy, but it looks bad for overpaid markets like Calgary. What will happen to overinflated real estate prices if people can spread out and are no longer tied to geographic centres for work?

Moral of the story. Get familiar with new virtual team technologies for remote meetings and communication. Get very familiar with it.

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