Friday, February 02, 2007

Connected by broadband, slow in applications (2)

The mobile session was interesting. For more than 10 years we have had a lobby in the Netherlands which concerned itself with Telelabour (remote labour), the Telework Platform. The officials of this forum did their best to prove that working from home save time and money for companies and prevented traffic jams. Especially the prevention of traffic jams sounded to me like baloney. People get used to traffic jams and otherwise they would stay home or go earlier or later.

So it was a relief to hear another sound of people who declared the traffic jam argument for dead. Basically that told the attendees, that people in a traffic jam will stay in a traffic jam more by habit than anything else. In fact if those people get an incentive they will leave home earlier. The argument to work from home is not holy either anymore. Working from home can be great depending on the function. In many cases it is possible to work from home more than people think, but the management culture does not always agree on this. Managers like to see the people they lead and inspire. Remote management is still a skill to be acquired. I understand that IBM takes this task seriously and has manager mobility, providing conditions to remotely work.

It was refreshing to hear that telelabour was dead and that people are now part of the nomadic network. It does not matter where you are, but you can either establish contact by mobile or mobile internet or move off the road and go to a restaurant, where they have ADSL and Wifi facilities.

The Netherlands is a small country cluttered with cars in the morning hours of 8.30h till 9.30h and at night at 17.00h till 19.00h. The minimum amount of kilometres measured over a few points will be minimally 90 kilometres, but when there is an accident the kilometres clock up fast. So it might be wiser to stay at home and answer the e-mails before getting in the car. But if you are caught in a traffic jam, it might be wiser to get off the road, rent a private office space at a restaurant and work for a couple of hours till the jam is clear.

Do I believe in the concept. Do not ask me. I travel by public transport (train, buses and cabs). Most people think that this is a waste of time in comparison with travelling by car. But when I pass a traffic jam by train, I have a feeling that I am doing better. Of course car drivers get from door to door, if they find a parking space.

If only to disband the traffic jam nonsense of the Telework Platform, I think that the idea of nomadic networking in restaurants should be given a chance and tried out. It will take some adjusting of attitude by the managers. I understand that the leisure association in the Netherlands, Horecava, likes the idea and sees a business opportunity in a broadband application.

Blog Posting Number: 651

Tags: broadband, leisure industry

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