Neither did the astronauts at NASA, but a new development over at Cape Canaveral is under way…
While it’s not the funniest thing I’ve ever read, it is a fun mockery of the recent popularity and wide-spread news coverage of Telecommuting as a way to save gas as the price per gallon continues to rise. The premise (fake of course) is that NASA astronauts are the hardest hit by the increasing price of fuel (not that space shuttles actually run on high octane gasoline, but you get the idea).
Here’s a quote from the article:
“We were seeing a steady exodus of astronauts leaving the space program for jobs where they can earn $10,000 a month working at home in their underwear,” said NASA Administrator Michael Griffin. “There were just too many yellow signs nailed to telephone poles near the base. Way too many.”
–Astronauts Hardest Hit By High Gas Prices (at The Free-Ass. Press)
I’m all for telecommuting (obviously) but this article successfully points out that unfortunately, some jobs just don’t lend themselves well to working at home.
Most of the articles I have read recently in the media have pointed out that telecommuting does not work for every job description; that it can sometimes be suitable for workers who deal with information such as writers, software developers, but even then the media writers have been cautious about predicting any long-term trends.
Personally, I think we are going to see a sea change moving toward a more flexible work place for most office workers, but I don’t think it is going to happen overnight. Old habits and attitudes die hard, and a lot of managers and workers still measure productivity by what hours a person sits at her or his desk, regardless of whether or not they are doing any actual work.
You’re right, Mike. Most of the articles do mention the fact that some occupations aren’t very telecommuting friendly. And I totally agree with you – I think we’ll see a sea of change in the way people work and the way work is measured over the next couple of decades.
This is just a sign of the times and what’s yet to come. It’s the dark and stormy before the next cool and sunny day. Often times more than not we find ways to overcome things like high gas prices. In this case though if that is at all serious… I need to check into being an astronaut. +1
In addition to telecommuting options, businesses may opt to go to 4 day work weeks.
I would LOVE that. Especially if schools would join in the fun.
Unfortunately my primary job isn’t telecommute friendly even though it is in IT. Even with all the price increases, only one person in my office is making a noticeable change in their commuting habits by taking the bus to work everyday.
Yet you own and operate TelecommutingForYou.com? That’s a tad ironic since the blog touts “Helping you find your perfect telecommuting job.” 😉
Kudos to the person in your office taking the bus. I can imagine it’s not an easy transition. I do sometimes wonder what the price-per-gallon breaking point really is. How much does gas have to cost before folks are FORCED to make a change of some sort – like public transportation, telecommuting, four-day work weeks, finding work closer to home, etc.
That statement is just too funny. I can’t imagine that there are a lot of jobs that can be realistically done from home. I know mine isn’t. I think the best thing a person can do to save money is to either carpool or find work close to home. I read an article a couple weeks ago, written by the National Energy Commission that said they don’t think gasoline will ever fall below $4 per gallon again. Hard times call for drastic measures sometimes.
I agree, lots of jobs can’t simply be done from a different location and hard times do call for drastic measures – whichever ones fit the bill at the time. I used to work for the USPS which isn’t exactly known for it’s family-friendly values (at least not on the worker bee shifts). So while it’s not an option for sorters to bring all the mail and those bins home, it certainly IS an option to schedule them smarter – and to allow all those postal employees the ability to move to locations which are closer to home if they can.
Come to think of it – I’d agree to get my mail delivered 5 days a week instead of 6 (just cut Saturday right out of the loop) if they’d agree to keep the price of a stamp set for longer than a couple of months. I’ve got the remains of rolls, 1-cent stamps, and 2-cent stamps STILL leftover.
Actually, there are quite a few jobs in America that can at least partially be done from home. I would venture to say a good plurality, if not a majority, of white collar office jobs lend themselves to 1-3 days a week of telework. My job certainly does.