The future is semi-remote

The future is semi-remote

“At least I’m not in a traffic jam…”

Nobody enjoys commutes. Not a single person.

Yet most of us leave home in the morning, face rush hour madness and move to a far-away office. We’ve invented all kinds of transport that take workers to the factory and we’ve been doing that since the industrial revolution. They all suck.

For creative knowledge workers, there is an additional problem. Developers, designers, writers, … are at their best when they can buckle down for a few hours of uninterrupted productivity. Somewhere they can get into the flow of their own rhythm and focus on their awesome products.

The office is the opposite of that.

It’s noisy and interruptions are everywhere. It’s impossible to get stuff done. So, we’ve got a system where people spend an hour stressing in a car to arrive at an office where they block out their colleagues using noise-cancelling headphones. Crazy, right?

“At least I don’t have to take public transportation…”

Some companies have been working completely remote for years. No commutes, no offices. The amazing Basecamp is an example of that. But most people enjoy face-to-face conversations with their colleagues. It can be fun and productive. Just not 5 days a week.

The middle ground is the semi-remote office. People go there to meet with their colleagues to plan and collaborate but do their actual work at home. Or in their favourite coffee bar. This is a system most companies could easily adopt. It’s a clear way to boost productivity and attract the right talent.

I didn’t find a list of semi-remote companies, so I started one. Check out these organizations that understand the nature of creative knowledge work and encourage their employees to work remotely at least two days per week.

This list is obviously a draft. Feel free to add your own company and contact me if you want to help. Let’s grow this list together!