Myth Busting – Can’t Build Social Capital with Remote / Distributed Work

4 thoughts on “Myth Busting – Can’t Build Social Capital with Remote / Distributed Work”

  1. Thank you Luis for another useful article and for introducing me to yet another Harold. I remember all these discussions 16 years ago and trying to convince the law firm I was working for at the time that they weren’t just flash in the pan. I think that there are some managers who need to see people in the office, but also think that the fear of recession and the need for presenteeism might act as the return to the offices best recruiter. I disagree as I think that the quality of the work you produce no matter where it is produced is important. People will go into the office as they need to if it helps them to produce great work. A combination of skills based communities/guilds and ESN tools I think are one of the major challenges for business leaders. Its interesting that some of the best thinking is coming from Europe and also that John Steppers working out loud has resonated most strongly in Germany.

    1. Hi, Andrew, thanks a lot for dropping by and for the wonderful feedback! Yeah, it looks like Harold / Harald is a very popular name in this space 😁👍🏻 heh

      I think you have pretty much nailed it with this quote from your comments shared above: ‘People will go into the office as they need to if it helps them to produce great work’. Indeed, and that’s *exactly* what I am hoping to invoke with this series of blog posts on myth busting office vs. remote / distributed work. It’s not that it is one or there other, but a combination of both! They are not mutually exclusive, but complementary. Understanding that context, end-users’ needs & wants and social, digital tools available play a key role in identifying where to do what and for what purpose.

      To me, it’s all about having a choice. Not a mandate. It’s about freeing up the ‘human batteries’ vs. forcing people into a certain set of toxic behaviours, driven by presenteeism, to please just a few while hurting everyone else.

      I am not surprised about the leading role of Europe in these discussions, frankly. At some point in time, we would need to address why in the other regions, including NA, it’s been quite an spectacular failure of biblical proportions to the point where these topics of conversations at the workplace have simply vanished. Or they didn’t even started in the first place!

      (Perhaps in another blog post I can develop further some of my own thinking and observations about why it failed in all of those other regions to the point of explaining why working distributedly is quite a challenge at the moment for most of them!

      Democratisation within orgs. is hard, for sure!)

      1. Thanks for this post Luis. You know there’s no way I could follow all those links, but it shows how your mind networks all this stuff together. Default to open. Enjoyed reading Andrew’s comment also. Glad you’re putting together this series. The one on culture was excellent also. Thought-provoking. Certainly the best conversations that are to be had are with these social tools and in the business context they are super powerful, inclusive, and extracting the best thought out of the people who are networked together in whatever organization/mission they are supporting. Good stuff Luis, I came back to check if you were serious on your promise of posting this series and I’m glad to see that you are and that there is another comment. The comments here aren’t as robust and “notifiable” as LinkedIn, but perhaps the blog comment/conversation is just a bit of a skill to learn. Anyway, I’ve subscribed to this via email so we’ll see.

        1. Hi, Justin,

          Thanks a lot for dropping by and for the lovely feedback! I am really glad to read you’re enjoying the series of myth busting blog posts RE: remote / distributed work. At this point in time, I am about half way through the series and then it’ll be a good time to dive into the more detailed conversation with examples, good practices, lessons learned and what not, based on plenty of the misconceptions I have bumped into over the years that, I think, would also need a bit more clarity and explaining. All in all, I am doing these posts as an exercise to expose the many false narratives we’ve been told to believe left and right and offer people an opportunity to identify how they *DO* have a choice. And to make that choice in the best possible way it’s always advisable to have a good number of information sources to feed from. Since no-one dared to write much about these myth busting issues RE: remote / distributed work, I thought I’d give it a go and see where they would take us…

          So far, the conversations have been really helpful, insightful and deep. Perhaps not as many as LinkedIn, indeed, but then again, I wasn’t expecting to have a massive following over here when I know vast majority of people are much more inclined for LI’s timelines to keep themselves entertained with little thinking in between before they are back to work. Alas, not what I wanted to do with these articles, I am afraid. I wanted to explore the long-term impact of these reflections and see where we may well be in, say, 10, 15 or 20 years from now. I suspect plenty of the silly arguments we are exposed to at the moment would make for a good laugh not long from now! Specially, seeing the troubled waters ahead getting closer and closer to each and everyone of us, not just a few. Going to be super interesting, that’s for sure!

          Oooh, by the way, you can actually subscribe to the blog posts, but also to the blog comments, if you were to use the RSS newsfeeds this blog has, as opposed to subscribe via email. Or you could sign up to receive notifications after your commentary. That should work as well … Let me know if it doesn’t and will take a look and see what’s going on …

          Thanks a bunch, once more, for the fantastic feedback and for taking the time! I very much appreciate it 🙏🏻😅

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