Managing Telecommuters: A Boss’s Perspective

Jet Blue’s got the right idea.  All of their reservation agents work from home.  They have created an entire webwork of telecommuters by using a computer network that feeds and monitors incoming calls to their at-home staff .

When I called Jet Blue to book a recent flight the reservation agent was very professional and pleasant.  If I hadn’t read about their telecommuting practices, I never would have known the difference.  At the end of the conversation I asked the agent, tongue in cheek, if she wears her bunny slippers to work (I couldn’t help myself).  She laughed, but didn’t answer.  I bet she does.

From a customer’s perspective, I appreciate the savings I get from Jet Blue’s cost cutting practices like the lack overhead for the reservations department.  From a boss’s perspective, I was inspired by their system of managing telecommuting employees. According to an article on cbsnews.com, Jet Blue had a 25% increase in productivity the minute they switched to this work-from-home system that accurately keeps track of each telecommuter’s work hours and performance feedback.

But how do the rest of us quantify our telecommuters’ work?   This is one of the biggest questions we bosses have about employees working from home.  How do I know how much they are working? Continue reading “Managing Telecommuters: A Boss’s Perspective”

Greener Office: Cleaner Air

Graymatter’s Guide To Greener Business Practices

Part Two

The Air You Breathe

NASA scientists prove that house plants can remove air pollution from indoor environments.

When I first heard about NASA sending plants into space, I imagined ivy growing long tendrils in all directions like weightless spiders.  Since then, research in the pollution fighting properties of plants has been carried out by several scientists including Dr. Bill Wolverton, formerly a senior research scientist at NASA’s John C. Stennis Space Center, Bay St. Louis, Miss.

While more research is needed, studies show that houseplants help eliminate certain toxins, counteract out-gassing and contribute to balanced internal humidity.   They even may provide a natural way of helping combat “Sick Building Syndrome”. Continue reading “Greener Office: Cleaner Air”