Author Topic: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job  (Read 4255 times)

boarder42

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ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« on: January 05, 2015, 07:34:39 AM »
I'm an engineer.  I have been at the company i'm at since leaving college ~5 years ago. 

An opportunity has come up to interview with a company that does ROWE and will allow me to work from home. 

I would like feedback from those who have done the ROWE path - Pro's/Con's - I have a friend who said companies tend to just keep piling work on you to keep you busy for the full 40 hours, so while in theory it works, in practice there are issues. 

Biggest issue i have is my current company is an ESOP and a very lucrative one at that.  I would probably be taking a similar salary buy lose out on my ESOP - 401k match is comparable both places. 

Obviously there are insane Work life balance differences in the 2 scenarios. 

boarder42

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2015, 09:26:20 AM »
Anyone ???

Figured there would be a few people doing ROWE type work on here.

Jack

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2015, 09:47:01 AM »
It might help if you defined your acronyms. I'm an engineer too, but I have no idea WTF (What The Fuck) "ROWE" means.

JLee

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2015, 09:50:02 AM »
Results Only Work Environment (google) 

:P

neo von retorch

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2015, 10:08:04 AM »
I have not worked for any companies that did ROWE, though I worked for a tiny company when I learned about it, and I convinced the owner to not make me do timesheets any more. But really what it should improve is what is needed with any job like this - the management should be able to clearly communicate to the team what needs done and they should be able to know whether you've done it. Lots of managers give vague requirements and time frames to the engineers, developers, etc (I'm in software) and know it will "take some time" and then argue about how much time they "feel" it will take but ultimately they don't know when you are or are not being productive because they aren't clear themselves on what "finished" looks like. Anyway, I'm curious if anyone weighs in on this. I always thought the overall principle behind it was solid, but Culture Rx (the company that sells the ROWE idea and trains it) seems to be more interested in making money off the idea than revolutionizing the workplace (in my opinion) - so it's possibly any company that buys into it just wants a fancy keyword to throw around to sell themselves as a better company. Optimistically, maybe they "get it" that what you get done matters, rather than the irrelevant people management policies and seat time that is usually used to gauge "performance."

boarder42

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2015, 10:25:07 AM »
Yeah the company was voted best place to work in STL.  I assume they do get it.  I've always been drawn towards this type of work environment, because it relates more to how i went thru school.  I didnt need to study so i was rewarded with more free time etc.  The same thing doesnt apply in the working world.  Generally you're expected to be at my office from 730am to 530pm regardless of what gets done or accomplished.  I can get my actual work done in about half the time of a counterpart but yet i have to sit here. 

The flip side is the company continues to pile work on you in the ROWE type company.  And you get screwed out of all free time as they pile more work on you since you're more efficient.  I guess this is what happens at a standard company as well.  I'm going to give them a chance to explain their culture on the phone interview.  And also ask what the typical employee works in an avg week. 

Being as part of the work will be in the field i'm also interested to know if they pay OT in the field since you can work long hours that have nothing to do with the work you performed but completely due to the construction not being completed or being completed incorrectly.

jngreenlee

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2015, 10:33:39 AM »
ROWE sounds like a way to describe any job, unless you're doing some type of shift work (even then, isn't the 'Result' that 'you are here'?). Is someone trying to claim that managers without the ROWE label don't care about results? That's just, like, silly!

Taking a new job is a huge risk regardless of what names they use to describe their 'style'. The unknowns are HUGE! Remember, your immediate manager sets your culture much more than the firm does.

I WFH in a high salary job and knew my immediate manager very well before joining the firm. Results are always expected, I routinely handle emergencies, make sure I don't let distractions get in my way, and that I'm always available on IM/phone, etc. By and large it works well for me and has reduced some external expenses (car, commute, $$ clothing), and raised others (comfortable office furniture, space to work from, heating and cooling).

iamadummy

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2015, 10:41:40 AM »
Just continue with regular job onsite and then get side job/gig for your additional free time.

mxt0133

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2015, 10:57:41 AM »
I work for a company that transitioned to ROWE.  We already has a pretty flexible work schedule, where people worked remotely full-time, part-time, and some the traditional 9-5.  It was a way to level set the company and make sure that everyone was treated the same.  There are some groups that are implicitly excluded due to support coverage, ect.  But for product development we were pretty much ROWE already.

For me it works great as I moved to this company for the work life balance benefits and not necessarily for career advancement or to get the highest salary I could.  ROWE can be a blessing or a curse.  For me I detest having to sit in the office just because it's not 6pm yet, if I get my work done I want out.  So ROWE works well for me because I can normally get my work done early and either leave early or stay and do personal projects.  I find setting boundaries and expectations to work well in this environment.  You will have to send more emails as you can't just assume someone is online because they could be out to a movie or doctors appointment during business hours.  There is a slight overhead when trying to co-ordinate large meetings.

We just had a management off-site where the employees were asked to give feedback and the result was we love ROWE but feel isolated.  Well duhhhh, you want to come and go as you please so don't be surprised when the office is only 60% full.

Feel free to ask me additional questions.

boarder42

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2015, 11:17:12 AM »
So MXT0133 do you find that you are given a normal amount of work and they arent trying to fill up your extra time with more?

It sounds like your reasons are similar to mine as well.  I dont like sitting here just to sit here.  I can get most of my work done in half the time some would take.  I feel like i would have 15 hours more to myself each week and still be wowing my bosses at this new company. 

mxt0133

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2015, 11:33:29 AM »
Yeah the more work to "fill-up" my time has come up a few times.  My strategy to this has been to gently discuss the value of such work.  If it is busy work I call it out and if they insist, then I comply and hold them accountable to review and see if it did add any value.  Basically if I'm getting extra work then someone else is getting extra work because I want to make sure it is done properly and adds actual business value.

On example was meeting notes, I serve as a SCRUM master for my team.  My manager wanted meeting notes and I politely stated that no one reads it, but they insisted, so I complied.  I then started sending them out with a message in the middle saying, "If you reply to this message with lunch, then it's on me".  I did it for two weeks and one one replied.  I then stated it to the team that no one has actually read the emails and therefore add no values.  At that point I stopped taking meeting notes.

So for me I am able to "manage up" if I find that I am taking on more work that everyone else.  At the same time if I find something I think is interesting then I gladly volunteer to do it, even if my existing responsibilities get affected or not.

boarder42

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2015, 11:37:01 AM »
sweet well thank you for the input i figured there had to be some ROWE people here.  I have a phone interview tonight with the head hunter then i'm sure i'll have a real interview with the company in the next few weeks.  I'll keep you posted on the information i gather.

The_Dude

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Re: ROWE with work from Home vs. Very Traditional Job
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2015, 01:07:36 PM »

On example was meeting notes, I serve as a SCRUM master for my team.  My manager wanted meeting notes and I politely stated that no one reads it, but they insisted, so I complied.  I then started sending them out with a message in the middle saying, "If you reply to this message with lunch, then it's on me".  I did it for two weeks and one one replied.  I then stated it to the team that no one has actually read the emails and therefore add no values.  At that point I stopped taking meeting notes.


ha ha awesome story :)