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Yahoo’s Ban On Working From Home

Yahoo! CEO and new mom Marissa Mayer – says no more working from home for her staff. But wait, wasn’t that the future?

This image released by NBC shows Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer appearing on NBC News' "Today" show, Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013. (AP)

This image released by NBC shows Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer appearing on NBC News’ “Today” show, Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013. (AP)

Surprise memo to the 11,000 employees of internet icon Yahoo! last week. And here’s what it said: no more working from home. None. Nada. Zip. Nevermind the magical, digital age of working from anywhere. Get your very physical self back into the office.

For Silicon Valley’s cutting edge digerati, this was a shocking command. All the more so since it came from the country’s most famous working mother, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, who has a young baby and a special nursery built right next to her Yahoo office.

This hour, On Point: Yahoo! says back in the office, and a digital generation wonders what’s going on.

-Tom Ashbrook


Kara Swisher, co-founder, co-executive-editor, and columnist at the “All Things D” tech website. She broke the story of Yahoo’s ban on working from home. You can read her story with the leaked Yahoo! memo here. (@karaswisher)

Raymond Fisman, professor of social enterprise and director of the Social Enterprise Program at Columbia Business School. Co-author of “The Org: The Underlying Logic of the Office.” His CNN piece on the Yahoo! decision is: “CEO Right: Yahoo Workers Must Show Up.”

Sylvia Ann Hewlett, President and CEO of the Center For Talent Innovation. (@sahewlett)

From Tom’s Reading List

Los Angeles Times “Corporate America’s most famous working mother has banned her employees from working at home. Now the backlash is threatening to overshadow the progress she has made turning around Yahoo Inc. Marissa Mayer, one of only a handful of women leading Fortune 500 companies, has become the talk of Twitter and Silicon Valley for her controversial move to end telecommuting at the struggling Internet pioneer.”

CNN “It struck a deep chord, contrary as it was to the techno-utopian impulse that has helped define Silicon Valley: the idea that someday soon we’ll all be working in coffee shops or kitchen tables, with broadband connections replacing in-person interactions. Mayer may have been extreme in her demands for face time at the office, but it’s the right call for a leader who is working to turn around one of the Internet’s laggards.”

The Atlantic “But these reasonable arguments for building a dense and collaborative workplace culture should be weighed against the preponderance of statistical evidence, which suggests that (1) sometimes people just like to work from home for a change, and (2) they’re really good at it. In reaching to build a new culture in a new Yahoo, Mayer might be alienating the most brilliantly independent-minded employees just because they value flexibility and Yahoo doesn’t.”

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  • http://www.facebook.com/wowiemary Mary McInnis Meyer

    Yes, Yahoo will lose some great minds who fare better in a more flexible environment.  Face time is important, but not required 100%.  Instating minimum weekly in-office hours, or requiring attendance at certain meetings where face-to-face is more effective are appropriate solutions.  I think the real question that needs to be answered is, why the “all or nothing” approach?

    • NewtonWhale

      Right on all counts.

      This is a self defeating move. And a good way to let everyone know you’re desperate.

    • Don_B1

      Ms Mayer might have benefitted from reading Sheryl Sandberg’s book, “Leaning In,” on women’s progress in business. There was a good discussion on the progress of women, specifically on the PBS show “The Makers,” on the Charlie Rose Show on Monday night, with Gloria Steinem and Amy Richards.



    I work at a very large, very successful tech company. Telecommuting is common. Parents don’t have to quit or go part-time because of this flexibility, and we are better off for it. Additionally, it’s silly to force employees, parents or not, to waste time and gas just so that they can sit with their faces in front of computers all day. Personally, most of my meetings are with coworkers in other states and countries, so coming into the office most days would be wasteful. I use my best judgement to determine when it’s appropriate to commute. If I were denied that capability, I would find another employer. This is just another one in a long line of bad decisions by Yahoo!’s management.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003854179878 Orange Sunshine

      In the New England area, we also have to worry about weather and getting safely to work in the winter time. 

      There was a time when our 24/7 365 tech group needed to either have the West Coast members jump in at odd times of the day to cover us -OR- we’d have to cover members who were in Colorado when either location had bad snows.

      Telecommuting has effectively solved that problem.

      At my current tech employer it’s not unusual for your manager and all/most of your team members in another city, state or country.  So as far as “reporting to the office”, who will see you, know or care where you are doing your work?

      Time will tell if Ms. Mayer is a brilliant CEO or will go the way of Carly Fiorina.

      • sickofthechit

         Is there some way to get Carly off the TV?

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          I’m afraid she’s Peter Principled her way onto TV for the duration, until someone carves out a “safe seat” for her in the House.

          (That’s provided she’d “stoop to conquer” after failing at other, bigger elective offices.)

      • hennorama

        Orange Sunshine – your post brought to mind the other obvious danger to those used to working from home and now being forced to commute – these workers are used to automatically responding 24/7/365 to their various electronic devices.

        These devices distract drivers, increasing the likelihood of these newly commuting workers being involved in auto accidents, both minor and serious.

        Given the litigious nature of American society in general, one wonders when the first personal injury lawsuit will be filed naming Yahoo as defendant or co-defendant.

  • rvl1

    Ban telecommuting? Fine. Let’s ban working at home. But don’t expect me to stay in the office past my 8 hours. Don’t expect me to bring work home at night or on weekends.  It cuts both ways. 

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      Wow. Sounds like someone around here’s just not a “team player”.

      (To let you know, I have gone full deadpan with my remark. On board with your comment.)

      • rvl1

        I worked in high-tech companies all of my adult working life in training development.  In the early days there was tremendous innovative teamwork built around projects.  It was very enriching and a lot of fun. Sadly all that has gone away with years of outsourcing/offshoring and a relentless push to reduce costs by dumbing down production values. Creativity apparently costs too much money. I and all of my former team members are now doing the same work as outsourced contractors from remote locations.  The company has closed most of it’s facilities and the only internal people left are project managers who hold meetings over the phone.  I have since been working from home for many years. My work often require intense focus and and I am definitely more productive without the distractions of the office including petty office politics. On the other hand it is good to come to kick-off, planning, and project review meetings in person with a team when possible.  Sometimes there can be a synergy there that make the work better and easier in a way.  So I can see the benefits of both work environments and believe it should remain flexible.  But don’t force me to do it.  I don’t mind working 50+ hours a week as long as I can choose which hours to do it in. .

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          “But don’t force me to do it” sounds like your lead sentence.

          Learned input is always welcome. Your experience puts you in a better spot to comment on this hour than 95% of the folks listening.

      • 1Brett1

        “Flexibility” is really a euphemism for “you work when and how often we tell you to work; now shut up and get back to work!”

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

      What does a ban on telecommuting have in common with 911.   Many people believe that destroying the Twin Towers had partly to do with the anticipated drop in demand for office space.  

      Now would Larry Silverstein, who made 7 Billion on a 15 million dollar investment be in on such a scheme??? 

      Yahoo is bending to pressures from the banksters who finance millions $$$$$$$  of square feet of office space.  Telecommuting spells the death of office space.  The bankers would rather have people commuting, spending useful time in traffic and polluting the air with exhaust fumes. 

      QUI BONO…. QUI BONO…..QUI BONO !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Michiganjf

    What’s the diff if someone works from home occasionally, when the end result is the main concern?
      If someone else’s work depends on a telecommuter’s proximity, or if group information exchange is required, that’s one thing… but reversing a reasonable and potentially valuable trend just to be a traditional corporate hard-ass is ridiculous.
      What’s the logic behind this move?
    Does it alienate, or anger, those in the company whose duties don’t allow them the same flexibility?
    Is there evidence to support Mrs. Mayer’s decision, or is this typical corporate nonsense?
    My biggest beef with corporate executive culture is this:
    A company becomes successful because it manages to create a successful business formula… then, corporate execs start presenting “big ideas,” changing the “formula” that helped make the business a success in the first place.
    Executives do this because they feel they need to PROVE they’ve earned their fat paycheck each year, whether there’s reason to believe their “big ideas” actually improve the original business formula or not.
    Enough years pass, each year bringing these new, often nonsensical changes, and pretty soon the original “formula” that made the company a success in the first place is obliterated.
    Were the changes worthwhile, or did they just serve to feed Big Executive Egos?
    This is NOT an argument against worthy innovation and experimentation, but it would be helpful if Corporate America better understood this dynamic, truly evaluating executive ideas on their merits rather than simply stroking executives’ egos.
    I’m not saying any of this applies to Yahoo in particular, as the company is NOT doing well… but in general, executives should better learn how to appreciate a successful formula when they inherit one… and fight to preserve it.
    Wouldn’t THAT be a novel way for execs to “prove” they’ve earned their pay each year?

  • Roy-in-Boise

    This CEO needs a crash course in remedial history. Good luck Yahoo! You’ll need it.

  • Duras

    Are people not getting things done? 

  • http://twitter.com/TweeterSmart b smart

    or Yahoo!: how to be the anti-google and fail.  always harder to play catch-up 

  • Acnestes

    All too typical, particularly among the type that gets to the top with some talent, but largely because they happened to be in the right place at the right time, then glorify themselves in their own minds as “self-made”.  “I did it all by myself so you have only yourself to blame that you’re not where I am”.  “I got my executive nursery, screw you.”  I’m reminded of Leona Helmsley’s,  “Taxes are for the little people”.

    • nj_v2

      I saw a bit of the excellent documentary “Makers” about the women’s movement in the U.S. (I’ll have to watch the entire program when i’m not distracted.)

      Ms. Mayer was one of a handful of women interviewed toward the end of the film who were asked about how they viewed the movement and “women’s liberation.” Ms. Mayer—along with a handful of other women—seemed not to appreciate or understand the efforts that were made in the previous few decades which allowed people like her to occupy the kind of position she now holds. Her attitude seems to represent a significant step backwards for worker rights.

      • Acnestes

        And one more step toward the increased commodtization of the human being who is that worker.  Remember when it was, “Personnel”?  Now it’s “Human Resources”.  Makes me think of soap and lampshades.

      • Gregg Smith

        Women are fine until they get a little power. She doesn’t know her place. Right?

        • Ray in VT

          Yeah, just like when you get some man-child that gets all uppity.

          • Gregg Smith

            Which idiot said that?

          • Ray in VT

            Man-child, uppity or maybe even boy?

          • Gregg Smith

            That’s sick.

          • Ray in VT

            I know.  It’s totally sick that people would say such things, but it is certainly within their right to express such views.

          • Don_B1

            I will agree that the GOVERNMENT cannot keep one from expressing such views, but an employer can fire one who does, and people do not have to accept those views.

          • Ray in VT

            That is tur.  The 1st Amendment applies to the state, not to employers or store owners.  Thwey can set ccertain policies regarding speech.

          • Gregg Smith


          • Ray in VT

            To which part?  That such statements are sick or that people are totally within their rights to express such views?

          • 1Brett1

            That’s fast becoming Ray’s own personal, “you tell people what to think then tell them they’re wrong for thinking that.”

          • 1Brett1

            Which idiot said that: Gregg.

          • Gregg Smith

            Who ever accused anyone of telling people what to think? Which idiot said that?

          • jefe68

            Rush Limbaugh. You like him too.

      • Fiscally_Responsible

        We don’t agree very often, but I wanted to let you know that I watched the PBS program last night and thought that it was very well done.  I thought that it gave a very thorough panorama of the movement over several decades and was particularly effective of how it ended (basically presenting unresolved issues and leaving the viewer with the open question of where does it go from here).

      • Don_B1

        The Charlie Rose Show had a discussion of the PBS show “The Makers,” from the women’s perspective on Monday night, with Gloria Steinem and Amy Richards.

  • LinRP

    This woman has absolutely zero appreciation for the paradox. 99% of workers given some flexibility to work productively AND manage a life with some reduction in stress will turn themselves inside out with gratitude, and in the end work much harder to retain that benefit. I think she’s made a stupid move. 

  • Fiscally_Responsible

    I would be curious as to how much discussion took place with employees, management, etc. before making this decision.  Given the fact that it is a seismic shift, I would hope that they really thought about it and discussed rather than issuing an edict from on high.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      I’d like to hope that also, but I’ve worked for some places which get “working family” awards, and I haven’t seen that decisionmaking process.

      Disclaimer: I’ve never been in Silicon Valley. Anyone else want to chime in who has?

  • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

    An ‘all or nothing’ approach like this is usually the reflection of a rigid mind or a desperate one. Either way this demonstrates a lack of imagination and poor understanding of change management, if any at all.

    What they need is not a dictator in chief, but real and better technical leadership. Perhaps if Yahoo’s search engine was better, I would not favor others over it. I regularly give competitors a try at giving me better search results, but I am never wowed, in fact, I am increasingly disappointed at how corrupted search results have become by companies gaming the systems and by these providers’ management playing along with them – when I find it hard to believe their is any integrity in the results I find it hard to believe in the integrity of the people managing the corporation.

    • TomK_in_Boston

      I agree that “all or nothing” is stupid in this matter. The competing forces are that it’s great to work at home, or in a coffee shop (my favorite), but OTOH face-to-face discussion of a project is important and a group works best with some social cohesion. It would be better to simply limit the time for being out of office. 

  • jimino

    So who are the “owners” of Yahoo who are paying this brilliant 37-year-old who, by her own admission, is not all that familiar with their products, $70,000,000 to run the company?

    • Gregg Smith

      She’s done quite well at Yahoo.

  • Gregg Smith

    The implication seems to be this is all about women in the workplace but is it? Does one’s sex play a roll in the decree?

    I don’t know but could it be the ones complaining are women who don’t want to work all day at the office like many men do but want the same pay?

    That’s the only dynamic I see, otherwise it’s a non-issue. She’s the CEO.

    • 1Brett1

      Where is this “implication” of which you speak? Where is this “dynamic” of which you see?

      • Gregg Smith

        The dynamic is as I wrote, “women who don’t want to work all day at the office like many men do but want the same pay”. I don’t know if the decree targets women only but that is the implication. Or maybe I inferred it. Do you think it’s the men wanting to work from home? It may be, I don’t know. 

        • 1Brett1

          Is that an actual quote in your first sentence? If so, I missed it. I don’t know what the work dynamic is at Yahoo. I know a lot of people who have computer tech jobs, and they all work from home. AND, they are all men. 

          I do also think it is a good idea that women can work from home. If some have children to look after and they are allowed to do so at home, that’s good to. (I know some people who work from home and their company’s policy is to require the employees who have children to get daycare, which also makes sense for that company, i.e., the employees have to be on the phone a lot with customers.)

          I don’t believe women want what men have but don’t want to work in the same way for it. I don’t think working at home is about this at all.

          • Gregg Smith

            I was quoting myself (above). It’s my notion I am defending because you asked. 

            I may be wrong, it’s none of my business.

          • 1Brett1

            So by starting your comment out with “the implication is” you meant you would imply such later in your comment…that’s too funny.

          • Gregg Smith

            The implication of the show. I’ve heard it now an I was right, that was the implication. I’m not sure what your point is but I’m glad you are amused.

    • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

      Yah no, men have just as many reasons to work at home: many of them the same, kid sick, care for parent, etc.

      Yes she’s the CEO and she’s leading by decree and that won’t help build real teams, communication and collaboration.

  • DrewInGeorgia

    Were there valid reasons for the reduction of work-at-home employees? If so that is one thing, however I get the feeling this is something else entirely. Is this the modern day equivalent of shunning those who don’t gleefully attend the cake party to gain some “face” time? Reinforcing that you view employees as Corporate Property may appear to be profitable in the short term but it will always bite you in the behind in the long run. I seriously doubt that a disgruntled workforce is going to be instrumental in turning the company around.

    • Gregg Smith

      You may be right but I just want to know when exactly did the option to work from home become the default accommodation expected from employers? Going to work does not strike me as an odd concept.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003854179878 Orange Sunshine

    MadMark: right on!

    Fiscally_Responsible: you’re kidding right? It’s not like these places discuss this stuff with employees beforehand: they don’t have to, there is no union or any sort of representation.

    Either: a completely mishandled attempt at “change” or a ploy to get “expensive” US workers to quit so they can move the jobs to low cost countries.

    • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

      There’s no need for a union: these workers are highly-skilled, highly-paid, and in demand. If Yahoo decides to crack down on its workforce, all the good employees will just go elsewhere. That’s way better incentive to treat your workers right than a union enforcing a rigid seniority-based hierarchy.

  • J__o__h__n

    So much for the theory that women CEOs will work for family-friendly policies.  As a male, I have yet to notice much trickle down from all the male CEOs.  Workers’ rights are a class issue.

  • 1Brett1

    It’ll be interesting to hear why and how this decision was made.  I wonder if Yahoo provides daycare…or is it just for the CEO? Will there be a grace period, an easing in for employees? Or will it be like turning off  light switch?

  • J__o__h__n

    I think that three days of being required to be in the office would be sufficient.  There is a value to working with others but I get more work done when I’m not interrupted. 

  • http://typograph.wordpress.com/ typograph

    I wonder if this move is really intended to cut staffing levels. Some people may quit because they either live too far away from the office or just get frustrated. Mission accomplished!

  • J P Fitzsimmons

    If a male CEO eliminated work at home there would be hell to pay. It’s like Republicans trying to get Democrats to do the dirty work and cut Medicare, SS and Medicaid. If Obama makes the cuts then it’s a legitimate cost saver.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003854179878 Orange Sunshine

       no, it’s nothing like that, your comparison makes no sense. Besides, a woman ceo made this decision and there is STILL hell to pay, judging by the outcry.

      • J P Fitzsimmons

         Actually, the outcry is rather mild. I’ve heard no one crying for her resignation but many willing to cut her some slack given Yahoo’s fallen state. Perhaps the analogy with Republican strategy is unfair. This may be completely her own decision and not some conspiratorial plan to tighten workplace flexibility.

  • methos1999

     I’m amazed at the controversy this is creating. Despite all the research and support of telecommuting workers as being more productive, the fact remains it will always be a niche. Police, firefighters, nurses, soldiers, teachers, construction workers are all examples of jobs which remain unlikely to ever have the opportunity of working from home (except for paperwork).

    Even those of us who work in a technical field, but build physical products (I’m a mechanical engineer), will always need to actually be in the office. Also, from a job security view, I’d rather not have a job that can be done from home – after all if I don’t need to physically be there, what’s to keep my job from being shipped overseas?

  • http://bethfalkwrites.com/ Beth

    Rather than assume, as so  many people seem to, that “working from home” means “not really working,” couldn’t management find a way to assess whether these telecommuters are actually getting their work done?  If not – come in to the office and work, or you’re out.  If so – why not leave well enough alone?

  • http://www.facebook.com/bkort Barry Kort

    Yahoo and Yahveh

    In biblical times, it was common wisdom that leaders needed two special qualities known as “Urim v’Thummim.”

    Scholars have puzzled over the meaning of those two Hebrew words, which literally mean “Lights and Perfections.”

    I reckon that a modern interpretation would be that Urim means mindfulness, brilliance, insight, awareness.

    Thummim is a tad more challenging to interpret. I reckon that it means empathy, compassion, mercy, heart, beneficence.

    A colleague of mine likes to translate “Urim v’Thummim” as HeartMind.

    Did Marissa Mayer stumble in her ability to guide her minions with Urim v’Thummim in her mind and in her heart?

  • SickOfTheElites

    SHE has a special nursery built right next to her for HER baby.

    I’m sure she’s doing the same for all the mothers at YAHOO.

    Wait. She’s an elite. The serfs can pound sand.

    • http://www.facebook.com/bkort Barry Kort

      When I worked at BBN Systems and Technologies in Cambridge, there was a pre-school next door to our office building.  The best offices in our building were the ones that looked out on the playground of the pre-school next door.

  • SickOfTheElites

    “Missy” Mayers says she could be where she is without the woman’s movement.

    “Missy” Mayers it’s more like you wouldn’t be there without the woman’s movement and your BEAUTIFUL BLOND HAIR.

    Get a clue “Missy”

  • toc1234

    its pathetic this is even a story – “news flash: company requires workers to work at work”.   it probably hits a nerve with media such as npr/cnn/atlantic since they have a vision of one day 99% of people sitting home listening to public radio all day while the other 1% go to work and pay all the taxes.

    • SickOfTheElites

      Yeah, wasting gas to kiss up to the boss face to face does pay off.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      hits a nerve with media such as npr/cnn/atlantic since they have a
      vision of one day 99% of people sitting home listening to public radio
      all day while the other 1% go to work

      Submitted without comment.

    • Ray in VT

      Good one.  That’s totally what is underlying the whole technology/flexibility movement that’s been going on for years.  Liberals just trying to get people to sit at home.  You really saw through that one.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ron.dahlke1 Ron Dahlke

    I’ve always been curious as to how to measure the quality/productivity of a “at home” worker. I’ve witnessed issues where an idividual can slam out a project in a couple of hours, yet bill for an entire 8 hours of pay.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1583431299 Jennifer L Baum

      you can do that sitting in the office too. how many games of ‘hearts’ have i seen played waiting for 5? lots.

    • Don_B1

      If the project’s quality was good enough to look like 8 hours of good effort, what would have prevented the person from doing the same effort over 8 hours at work, either stretching it out or spending 6 hours exploring personal issues after finishing the project?

      If the computer used to do the work is the company’s, the company could put software on it to monitor activity and if by type, know how and when the work was performed. Maybe not the best way to express trust in your employees, but it has happened, though mostly for monitoring laborers not white-collar workers.

  • A Hook

    The only way to find out what is needs to be improved/fixed within the company is to be able to oversee productivity and you cannot oversee productivity if someone is working remotely.  

  • Kathy

    I wonder if this isn’t just an easy way to lay off a lot of people without paying unemployment.

    • SickOfTheElites

      Now you’re thinking like the elite think.

      Of course it is. Duh?

  • ToyYoda

    What would Steve Jobs do?  That’s what I’d like to know.  My guess is that he would ban it too.  He understood the value of serendipitous meetings between employees in a hallway, and the synergy and creativity that comes being physically in the same place.  That is why he put the bathroom at Pixar Studios in one place.

    Personally, I can speak first hand of how non-verbal communications is so essential in working.  I’ve been on projects that have been derailed for months but was solved in face-to-face meetings which usually end up saying, “Oh that’s what you mean.”

  • J__o__h__n

    One of the few things I had used yahoo for was to quickly click on the weather.  Now that option is no longer listed without having to click on more options.  I’ll go to another site.  This improvement is up there with the On Point popups. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003854179878 Orange Sunshine

    a CEO who has a nursery in her office can’t understand that parents need to get to get on the road, in often horrible traffic, to pick up their kids at daycare.  Or maybe people just want to have a life.  Or they’ve been told to not work one iota of overtime, if they are eligible for it.

  • SickOfTheElites

    People working at home are more productive.

    Yes, studies do say that. 

    Just read one a few days ago.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jim.castronovo Jim Castronovo

    20 years working for technologies companies… most of those years from home. Currently I work for a firm of 60+ employees that has NO home office. However, my first years were spent as a ‘workhorse’ at a small start up with 100-hour weeks, sleeping bags in the office and the drive of an under-30 crew. I understand Mayer’s need to recreate that start-up spirit to kick start Yahoo, but it seems like Mayer is putting the cart before the horse.

    • Kathy

      If they want that hundred hour startup mentality, they are going to need to recreate the “instant millionaire” stock option startup thing.

    • sickofthechit

       Actually your diagram of horse and cart would work really well if the horses feed is in the cart.

  • mairelena

    I was a new supervisor for a state agency.  More than half of my employees were telecommuting.  Luckily, the rules said that when a new supervisor arrives, the telecommuting contract was discontinued. They all came back in to the office.  After a enough time passed to help us get to know each other, the contracts were re-negotiated, except for the one or two who were not productive.  Work from home is a contract between the boss and the employee and it is not necessarily forever; therefore, those people should work it out, not uninterested by standers. 

    • Kathy

      That depends on the agency. I know people who work remotely who don’t live in the same region as an office. That’s apparently a big issue with the Yahoo changes. For some people they are defacto layoffs.

  • Ray in VT

    I think that the memo makes good conceptual sense.  There can be a lot of positive benefits from having people together at work.  A lot of work these days, though, doesn’t require one to be in the office.  Much of what my job entails can be easily done from home with a good connection and the right software.

  • Brian E. Eirschele

    Tell your reporter to get the crap out of her throat and speak clearly! 

  • Michael Ross

    Kara Swisher is so unrelentingly negative about Yahoo.  In all fairness, it should be noted that there is a clear conflict of interest in her “reporting.”  She is married to an executive at Google.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/EAYKORTHSLPQEZFKXBJMXMV2IE Tony

    Although she is probably a liberal voter, she realizes that utopia cannot be created on earth.  She is an intelligent, rational business person whose job is to create shareholder value by implementing a sustainable business model for Yahoo.  Without a sustainable business model, there will be no growth and no jobs.  It’s that simple folks.

    • sickofthechit

       How does that work for the future when we live on a limited resource in the middle of nowhere?

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1583431299 Jennifer L Baum

      what makes you think she’s a ‘liberal voter’? (serious question not sarcasm) 

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/EAYKORTHSLPQEZFKXBJMXMV2IE Tony

        I said she is “probably” a liberal voter.  I can’t say for sure, but were I a betting man; I would bet that she is a liberal based on the fact she lives in S.F., she is a woman and she is in I.T. industry.  Probability wise, I would say she is a liberal.  However, I could be wrong.

  • toc1234

    its yahoo’s call.  if it doesnt work, then they will pay the price as a company and mayer will be canned.  big deal.  The real story is the way that the media (and this show in particular) is treating this issue more as a cause than a news item.

  • sickofthechit

    She may have paid for the renovations, but is she paying rent on the space?

  • J__o__h__n

    Simplistic solutions and micro-managing!  How can this fail?

    • SickOfTheElites

      Resentment builds. Good people will go elsewhere.

      The Kiss Ups and the not as good will be the ones left.

  • chuckMidwest

    Hi Tom,

    I’ve found you get more done working from home, less coffee breaks talking about your coworkers little league games, you do lose some of that “community” feeling though!

  • toc1234

    btw, I’d love to stroll into WGBH headquarters here in Boston and ask a few questions about their business pratices…….

    “Public TV behemoth WGBH has to pony up more than $300,000 as part of a federal civil settlement for what authorities said yesterday was shoddy record keeping of federal grant money.                                                                                                                            Under a deal struck with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, WGBH must fork over the money for failing to “properly track and account for” federal grants from the National Science Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts, according to an announcement yesterdayIn 2011, a Herald review found that more than a dozen WGBH execs at the taxpayer-subsidized flagship station were making more than $200,000 a year while working in an $85 million multimedia headquarters dubbed the “Taj Mahal.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      “This settlement underscores that recipients of federal grant money must be scrupulous in their accounting for how those funds are spent, and in making accurate reports to federal grantors,” Ortiz said.                                                                                                       According to the settlement agreement, WGBH was awarded more than $60 million in federal grants between 2003 and 2010.                                                                                                                                                                                           Federal officials looked at records from 2005 to 2008 and discovered WGBH had an “inadequate accounting system” for tracking its spending of grant money, which violated the terms of its grants and regulatory requirements, according to the release.                                                          “As a result, WGBH could not adequately ensure and demonstrate that project costs charged to federal grants from the three agencies were reasonable, allowable and allocable to the grants,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.                                                                                    In a statement, WGBH said it didn’t misspend money or fail to account for grant funds. “The errors amounted to just one-half of one percent of the total value of the grants,” WGBH’s statement said.                                                                                                            In 2009, before the review, WGBH said it brought in new managers and “made a series of personnel, policy and procedural changes that have since created a thorough and comprehensive grant compliance system.”                                                                                                  

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003854179878 Orange Sunshine

       off topic.

      • sickofthechit

        ….but “On Point”!

  • Waldemar Kozak

    It is indicative of lack of trust in her employees. The sentiment is very common at companies that are not performing well…

  • http://twitter.com/KeithMontpVT Keith Vance

    I’m surprised that this is even a topic for on-point. I can’t figure out why I’m supposed to care about this. Yes, it will effect people who have crafted their lives around telecommuting, but unless you work at Yahoo, why does it matter to you?

    Having worked in technology for more than 15 years, it would be relatively easy for people who don’t like this policy change to move to another firm that does offer telecommuting.

    And Yahoo is largely irrelevant in the technology sphere.

    There are certainly more important issues that have far broader appeal that are worthy of discussion. .

    Personally, I think it’s a dumb idea, but like I said, I don’t work there, so I don’t really care.

  • JBK007

    Human-to-human interaction is crucial for innovation and creativity. Having people work from home is to make them more productive.

    So – have the employees come in to the office to create their new innovations, then send them back home to work more productively in developing and implementing them.

  • DrewInGeorgia

    I am assuming Marissa Mayer has (or purports to have) a Green Streak. How much of an increase in Gasoline and Oil consumption and Carbon Emissions will this decision directly cause? How much of an increase in Corporate Utilities consumption? I’m sorry but it’s looking more and more like this was nothing more than a mandatory “face” time increase with a beneficial side of reduction in labor costs.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

       Perhaps Mayer’s “green thrust” is to make sure everyone else’s employees telecommute, and keep off the roads, so hers can commute faster and easier.

      It’s the old “mass transit’s purpose is to keep everyonee else off my roads” gambit.

  • azzivar

    the reality is for many large corporations, our teammates are spread across the country and globe..

    therefore being in the office is a really moot point.

    I can understand the culture issue and aspects, but from what I’ve seen, it’s really an issue of poor management. I know where I work, there is way to much attention given to reporting progress, that no time is left do address the issues uncovered from that measurement. It’s always simply “are you done yet?” as opposed to “what can I do to help ensure you’re making progress”

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/JL6WVTQL5QQHTDPW2CMXVRQDTY Daniel

    Two points:
    1. In education we are being told more and more that we must teach our students to collaborate. It’s a skill that’s so important in society, and especially the workplace. It’s pretty tough to collaborate when you are working alone.

    2. If you want to work at home, open your own in-home business. I know some may think that’s harsh and out-of-date, but it’s reality. After all, how many factories, restaurants, medical offices (including hospitals) etc., can function if the workers stay home?

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003854179878 Orange Sunshine

       strawman.  How in the world could you telecommute as a waitress, or lab technician, to name a few from your examples?

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/JL6WVTQL5QQHTDPW2CMXVRQDTY Daniel

        I wasn’t saying those positions could be done at home. My point was that you have to leave your home to work a “regular” job!

  • LisafromOG

    It’s been written that Yahoo is a grandfather of Silicon Valley companies, and this is certainly the move of an out-of-touch but well-meaning grandparent.  It’s a top-down fiat with little transparency or evaluation (especially since it appears Yahoo lacks on-site day care).  As Kara Swisher said, Yahoo could have evaluated those not working efficiently off-site.  If Yahoo is not cutting edge in terms of its people-management, how can it expect to be a technology leader in the 21st century?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1583431299 Jennifer L Baum

    so if i have to be IN the office to work then when i am OUT of the office am i allowed to not work at all? there are a lot of managers out there that believe if they can find you then you can be working, so you should be. i had a boss call me when i was home so sick i couldn’t stand up and told me to conference with another person to work out a problem he had. he also called me when i was on vacation. to talk about budgets. he’s not the only jerk out there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/david.teal.391 David Teal

    This happened with the software company I used to work with. They built a new office, but didn’t have enough space for everybody. Some of us were told to work from home. The company pitched this as a good thing for the company and employee. Then a few years and layoffs later, they required people to return to the office. They just changed the pitch to being a good idea to be together again. I think companies ought to be figuring out ways for people to be productive wherever they want/need to be. Our society needs this!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    I’ve worked for management who insisted people were at their desks – and their desks were near their manager – because the only measure the manager had of people “working” was seeing them sitting at their desks. Meaning they had no clue what their people actually do.

    I work from home – between commuting, dealing with work clothes, etc, I’d lose about 30 hours of my time every week coming into the office. Which is not going to make me more productive. Not to mention all the extras costs.

    Ironically, when we’ve had visits from high level management we’ve been told to clean off our desks – which makes it look like no one is working.

  • Markus6

    Complex topic. I remember years ago looking at the studies on telecommuting. They all came up positive for telecommuting, but they also relied on self-reporting for their data. Inotherwords, the people who were participating (and liked it) reported it was effective.

  • http://twitter.com/kitmitchellcom Kit Mitchell

    Marissa Mayer finally broke the glass ceiling and is behaving like a man.  Creativity and productivity needs motivating benefits, not restraint. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.rose Kyle Rose

      Puts the lie to the supposed “gender” problem in corporate America. In reality, it’s a class issue.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000792995833 Bhanu Deshpande

      In a way yes.  I have seen and worked with very compassionate managers that are men.  I would not compare her to  a  man. :)   

      I think this is a way of reducing the company size….

  • LisafromOG

    It’s been written that Yahoo is a grandfather of Silicon Valley companies, and this is a grandfatherly move – well-intentioned but out-of-touch, insensitive (no on-site day care, for example) and top-down without others’ input.  As guest Kara Swisher said, Yahoo could have analyzed its data and evaluated its personnel.  Instead, it imposed a one-size-fits-all solution.  If Yahoo isn’t cutting edge in its talent management, can it really be a cutting-edge 21st century technology company

  • lmhughes

    What about that new book that’s out that said innovation and new idea generation actually happens more naturally and productively when people work ALONE?  They collaborate but NOT in a GROUP–the GROUP approach actually hurts innovation?

    I think this is just a personal belief Meyer has that having constant togetherness and face time and corporate bonding is what will make a great company.  It’s a theory and people can just opt not to work their if they don’t want YAHOO to be their whole lives–professional and social.

    I wouldn’t want to work there if it’s as inflexible as the memo makes it sound. 

    • J__o__h__n

      I was thinking of that during the show.  Quiet: the Power of Introverts by Susan Cain.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=742312277 Desdemona Finch

    Girlfriend needs to walk the walk. She can’t have her own nursery next to her office and ban telecommuting. Either send JR. to daycare like everyone else does or provide free childcare on site or allow telecommuting.

  • SickOfTheElites

    The Elites LOVE telecommuting when it comes to using low paid workers in India, China, etc.

    The Elites HATE telecommuting when it comes to Americans getting a decent paycheck.

  • cc345

    I work from home sometimes – when I have a big project deadline and need to work 12 hour, focused days to meet it, or when my kids are sick.  The day my employer removes that flexibility is the day when I clock out after 8 hours and don’t check my email on nights and weekends.  After all, if working from home isn’t productive, why would I spend any of my off time working from home?

  • kitkeller

    Do you seriously believe time is not wasted in the office setting?? I am way more productive at home. No one comes into my office to ‘chat’ and no birthday celebrations cut 45 minutes out of my day. 

  • mamalulu

    Tasha is brainwashed! Why in the WORLD should we accept policy change, just because Mayer says so?  She has built a nursery next to her office, and Tasha says – well, sure she’s the boss.  I say NO!  Why is class distinction and privelage okay?  There are plenty of ways to work, and flexibility is how working is accomplished best.  I say no to a ultimatum.  Some days – yes in the office with a team, some days – no – work at home uninterrupted.

  • jayhoward

    All this sturm and drang about people being “forced” to work from work is ridiculous. If that’s the job — you do it. If you don’t like it, quit. It’s ridiculous to think the “best” people are going to quit. If they do, they were malcontents anyway and there are PLENTY of good or better people would be thrilled to have a good high paying job and would be happy to replace anyone who quits. If this is the factor that makes people quit, then they were not the people you want anyway. As Charlie Sporck, the president of National Semiconductor used to say, “It’s bad when employees quit and leave but it’s worse when they quit and stay.” 

  • Eric Herot

    Too much emphasis in this discussion is being placed on the merits of working from home, and not enough is being spent talking about the folly of enacting top-down policies that are inherently distrustful of the management abilities of individual team leaders.

    The fact is that if you don’t trust a manager to decide what’s best for their own team, you have to remove them from that job.  Simply dictating management techniques from the CEO’s chair (be it work-from-home policy or anything else) is a recipe for a disgruntled workforce and a company with little faith in its executive team.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mlanning Mark Lanning

    I have worked for three years now remotely.. well my office and co-workers are in Philadelphia while I live in Iowa.. previous to moving back to Iowa I worked out of the office for 7 years.   I am a chief software architect.
    I sublease a office as my quality of work at home is not nearly the same as at a office void of distractions.. at least during normal business hours.  I work from home a lot as well.. but I have to say that that people working from home is a issue when it is during normal business hours.. it is hard to schedule a meeting, etc..
    If I was Marissa Mayer I would set the policy as ‘you must be in the office from 9AM to 4PM at least for 30 hours a week.. as in for the first 40 hours of your work week you can only work from home 10 of those.. if you work more than 40 great.. work from home, or whatever you need to be productive.

    People need face time… they need to know that if they schedule a meeting you can be there in person..  Phone conferencing is nice but NOT THE SAME as in person meeting.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    I betcha there will still be plenty of work from home at Yahoo. Just not during 9-5. Management won’t be saying “well you’re home now so we won’t expect you to work”.

  • adks12020

    While I am an advocate for flexibility many people just work better when surrounded by others that are doing work. Even the smartest most innovative people can benefit from person to person contact.

    Personally I would like the ability to work from home once in a while but I would rather go to work the majority of the time and not combine my work and home life.  When I’m home I don’t want to be working. I like the separation of the two parts of my life.

  • Call_Me_Missouri

    I think this CEO is doing the right thing here.

    Work from Home privledges should be EARNED not GIVEN and certainly not EXPECTED.  It’s WORK not PLAY time.

    There is a time and place for working from home.  As a software engineer there were days when I HAD to work from home minus the distractions of constant cubicle visits and those days were great.  But there is NO SUBSTITUTE for In-Person Meetings for rapid decision making during a development life cycle.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/JL6WVTQL5QQHTDPW2CMXVRQDTY Daniel

    Tom, you keep saying “What about the idea that the internet would change our working habits?”

    It HAS changed a lot of things about work, but not every change is necessarily positive nor has it proved to be effective. Sometimes we have to admit that we made a mistake.

  • http://endlessknots.netage.com/ jessica lipnack

    I wrote the first book on VIRTUAL TEAMS (Wiley, 1997) and have been following this trend for years and co-author of the HBR article, “Can Absence Make a Team Grow Stronger?”. Two points: there is no data to support the notion that people need to be face-to-face to collaborate OR innovate. Yes, there are moments to come together but not perpetually. Second, the genie is out of the bottle. When you bring everyone back, you’re not bringing in the working teams as members are scattered around the globe. Yahoo should do a study of where its team members are situated — and it’s not in proximity of Yahoo HQ. And that’s just the start of what’s wrong with this 20th century edict.

  • BHA_in_Vermont

    I very much doubt that someone with young children at home will be as productive as they would be at a work place. Certainly they won’t be available for long uninterrupted periods of work with colleagues. Young children demand frequent attention and interrupt at will. “Mommy/Daddy is working now” just doesn’t cut it.

    However, it can work IF your job does not entail much interaction with other employees.  Start the day before the kids get up, work after they go to bed. Get the 8 hours in but in 16 hours. Do some of the work on weekends.

  • Eric Herot

     It’s one thing for your immediate boss to insist that you be there for the success of his team, but it’s quite another for an executive three or four layers away to tell you that you know best how to achieve productivity from your own team.

  • TyroneJ

    Of the several people I know at Yahoo, none are bothered by this change in policy. I have to wonder how much of the noise over this is really external rather than internal.

    Based on my experience with telecommuting (back when I had a software company) is that Yahoo won’t lose their best talent, and that the overwhelming majority of people will adjust. Another thing I learned was that the really good people will work a long day at the office, and then also do a little more late in the evenings and/or early in the morning. Since I also learned long ago that prima donnas are never worth keeping around. If there are some people who can’t adjust and throw fits over this, well, good luck to them in their new endeavors.

  • ASerrano1023

    I’ve managed a team of 15 across north america and I applied standards of practice that allowed my team to work from home to provide flexibility however, the base standards were that work deliverables were in on – time, accurate and innovative and that we were all available to collaborate during our scheduled work day.   If those fundamental practice became inconsistent, those individual exhibiting those inconsistencies would be spoken to and if the issue remained, their work from home would be revoked and they would ultimately be asked to come back into the office.  You don’t cut off your nose despite your face.  I personally am very effective when I work from home.   And ensured I was very available, via, txt, e-mail, phone, video conferencing, social blogging, ect.   

  • KateDeVagno

    I was shaking my head in disbelief at the caller who said when she was at work she worked, when she was at home, she didn’t. I don’t care whether you’re a teacher, a therapist, or in middle management, no one is able to leave “work at work” anymore. Teachers are grading tests at home at night, therapists are doing paperwork at home on the weekends, managers are on email at all hours of the day. Work seeps into every aspect of life, and the only way to manage it well is to have flexibility.

    • mkt

       Agree.  And what these new moms don’t realize is that the youngest/needy years are hardest but as kids grow and are more independent, they learn that mom or dad is working at home and cannot be interrupted. But what becomes more challenging is how to get kids from school to their sports and activities and juggle the needs of their growing lives.  The flexibility of working from home allows a worker to be incredibly productive while also being a great and present parent.

  • Boston_mom

    I work full-time from home as a business reporter and I think it is challenging but wonderful. I get my kids off the bus every day at 3:20, and as a result I work a lot at night. I write a lot for my publication, and I definitely cost the company far less money since I work on my machine, using my Internet, etc. Google Drive and Dropbox make this pretty seamless. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    What’s funny is a lot of the interaction she is talking is not “work”. The interaction she is talking about is very useful, but it’s the synergy you get from sitting around, drinking coffee, shooting the —-, and not getting any work done.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/2HKENWHYE7TMWIGNTZ3YBQRACU E Twomeu

    Perhaps the boss is realizing that you cannot juggle everything without the quality being diminished. She may want to “get out of the house” and leave the childcare to a nanny/daycare but doesn’t want to admit it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/drpmeade Paul S Meade

    This situation, as most in life, is not an either/or but an and/or issue. Some people can work better at home, but I know from past experience and from the experience of others that working with a screaming and demanding child in the background is not productive. Telecommuting may work for the childless or those whose children are in daycare or school, but concentrating on work even when in the workplace is difficult enough.

  • Kathy

    The caller is wrong. If she left her child at daycare or at home, whether or not she had a child would be irrelevant. The fact that she used her power to build an in house day care facility for her use alone makes it relevant.

  • Cheryl2013

    If it was Mark Mayer, new CEO, instead of new mom Marissa Mayer CEO, who sent this email, would we all be sitting here analyzing this?  I am sure her mandate as a new CEO is to alter the course of the corporate culture which has been, by all accounts, floundering. It may be a little bit easier for her to begin a series of changes if everyone comes to work for a while. I’m sure there have been other decrees by CEOs that have done things far less draconian then this.

  • mamalulu

    The fact that Mayer has an infant IS THE POINT!  The reason is because she, herself has a nursery next to her office.  This arguement can’t be one sided!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ADZ6TZZKHWRLDNAOP6R2MBBP6A Bob S


  • http://www.facebook.com/swelson Sam Welson

    Isn’t it ironic that a company that exists to provide ways to communicate online is no longer comfortable using online methods to communicate and collaborate amongst themselves.

    • mkt


  • matthew

    I’m surprised that a tech company like Yahoo! isn’t using this as an opportunity to improve technologies and managerial procedures that facilitate telecommuting. This decision is seriously a step backward. Perhaps Yahoo! should start selling paper as well.

  • SickOfTheElites

    Top engineers are gold in Silicon Vally.

    Yahoo is slitting their own throats when they make them unhappy.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/MIC7ZSCYXTOJIQQ3PYLTDJXNTA Adam

    I agree with the previous caller that the responsibility of  raising children should fall on both men and women but the reality is that I as a man cant very well stay home and breast feed my infant. 

    • Kristin Wehking

      Thanks to breast pumps, formula etc  women do not have to be chained to an infant, and both parents can equally participate in all aspects of child care.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/QMDZ3LH5U2B4GAT7J2HS4TCP6E Jim

    i am all for people going to work in the office instead of home… and i know how frustrating it is to try to get people in the office for meetings.

    but… it is a big but.. she cannot change a 15 year culture overnight. her arrogant nature will be her undoing… i am not kidding.

    • SickOfTheElites

      Good. Couldn’t happen to a more clueless arrogant woman.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1481650241 John Dale

    My impression is that this will be a temporary measure. One that reduces permanent work-from-home status of employees. I’m sure that it’ll be ok to WFH once in a while. 

    I work from home once in a while–there are no set days–and it’s fine depending on what I’m working on. Task based work is great, but planning, strategizing, and collaborating, is more difficult.  It is important to be seen in the office to build relationships and work collaboratively. 

    If most people are in the office and you are at home, you are out of sight and probably out of mind.

    Mayer is doing the right thing as far as I’m concerned.

    • mkt

      Agree that likely this is temporary, however don’t agree that doing work at home is only good for “tasks” and not for “planning, strategizing, and collaborating”.  I have successfully done all of the above – building relationships around the world I might add – working 100% from home.  There are incredible collaboration tools that allow you to work in online communities in the most collaborative and efficient ways I have experienced in my 20+ years career, which included working in offices for most of those years.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1481650241 John Dale

        My own experience is that something that can take an hour in the office, with all parties present and capable of making decisions, can take a day or more when working with offshore and remote teams. Online tools are great–until network lag and time zones come into play. I’d rather be in the office–most of the time. ;)

        • mkt

           I think together we are making the case for a hybrid model rather than a mandate for “all in office”.  I worked for a company that had an outstanding online employee community where strategizing, decision-making, and collaboration was lightning fast and did not exclude any groups due to timezone differences.  In fact, because the community included employees around the world it helped build consensus for decisions, and execution was more effective as a result.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1481650241 John Dale

            Yes –I think so. Flexibility is very important.

  • mkt

    The two speakers should study companies like NetApp – companies that are successfully using online employee and customer communities for collaboration and effective productivity.  Telecommuting is not the issue.

  • SickOfTheElites

    Humans want human contact in places that deny their humanity.

    We are so f$cked up.

  • rich4321

    The employers’ mind sets are so archaic. Today with all the high tech connectivties available, many works can be easily done remotely. Professions such as software engineers, CPA and writers, these type of work can be done easily remotely. When do employers have to make workers spend hours a day commute ? 

    • SickOfTheElites

      Slave/Master system.

  • disability_is_not_death

    It may be sexist to discuss Mayer’s having kids, but her offhandedness in having a nanny on-site for herself without considering the needs of her employees with kids of daycare age seems downright classist.

    • SickOfTheElites

      Her kid needs to go home now.

      Believe me, resentment is building as little Mayers wails.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=737018629 Mary Anne Baumgartner

      It’ not sexist at all, it’s reality and it’s a very practical comment.  I find Ms. Mayer rather comical.  I would recommend everyone watch the PBS show “MAKERS…” on the history of the American womens’ movement and see how far we have come and how far we still have to go.  Ms. Mayer is featured in that show and she makes an inane commment.  I hate to sound the “in my day” horn, but I am 54 and believe me, I remember what it was like without daycare, flextime, etc.  Melissa Mayer would not be able to do what she does if not for people like my 95 year old mother, who raised me as a single mother (she was that other pariah in the 50s/60s and part of the 70s – a dirvoced woman).  And that’s probably a good thing as it really does speak to the progress we have made as a society.  Melissa Mayer does not need to bow down before Steinem et al.  But she does at least owe her employees a little less smugnesss.

  • DukeofNuke

    This all sounds a bit whiny to me. Perhaps some of these people that are so upset about having to actually “go to work” should try careers as nurses, or cops, or construction workers, or soldiers.  

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ADZ6TZZKHWRLDNAOP6R2MBBP6A Bob S

    As a society, we have done a great job opening up opportunities for women they did not have 50 years. But guess what? The consequence is that a typical family now puts in 100 hours per week working for an employer instead of half of that 50 years ago.  No wonder the quality of life has suffered, not to speak about the social problems due to kids being left alone. The solution is pretty simple: across the board cut in working hours.  How does 24 hour work week sound?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ADZ6TZZKHWRLDNAOP6R2MBBP6A Bob S

    Of course, anything like this would be violently opposed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/C22GA7HPK3ACCXO5T4LPUI47LU janet

    This is an interesting way to view organizational change.  The plan to  end  working at home was probably part of Mayers’s plan when she arrived at Yahoo.  She was pregnant when she arrived at Yahoo.  She became a hero for women.  
    I didn’t have a good feeling about her start at Yahoo.  I thought she was modeling behavior she expected of others.  I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.  
     It will be interesting to see if she puts the infrastructure into place to support the changes she is creating. An infrastructure change would be day care etc.

    And then again it could be about speeding up attrition rates at Yahoo.  Instead of layoffs, create circumstances that ‘force’ people to leave. 

    She handled the change in policy (and culture) regarding working at home  the same  way Yahoo introduce change to customers.
    NO warning, take it or leave it

  • Patricia_OGorman

    Working mothers are resilient, they need to be. The question is not can they do this, but what price they will pay in terms of their own health, and well-being, to do this, particularly in the short-term with little planning time. This is why I wrote The Resilient Woman: Mastering the 7 Steps to Personal Power, in bookstores 3.5, to help women organize their strengths in the face of crises, and this is certainly a crises for the working mothers impacted.  Patricia O’Gorman

    • PithHelmut

      Trouble with books like these is that they perpetrate the same old patriarchal system which we can see is broken and decrepit. With women in high positions in the work force and in elected government, it’s saddening to see they are not availing themselves of their forte which is being dramatically innovative. Actually Marissa Mayer is just a pseudo male.  Let’s have some passion Yahoo! Earn your exclamation mark.

  • 1Brett1

    If indeed there is a systemic problem with productivity among those who work for the company at home, then one might see a need to implement such a broad one-size-fits-all policy. If Ms. Mayer’s implementation of this policy truly greatly improves Yahoo’s products, services and employee productivity, then she will be applauded…My sense is that this won’t happen, however.

    This seems, in my view, like an ineffectual CEO who has a top down view of management without a genuine investigation of a problem: a reactive solution and management rather than a proactive one. Yahoo doesn’t truly innovate their services; they make “improvements” by using the more-lights-and-whistles-the-better approach, the “new” is a cosmetic change by rearranging the furniture. 

    It seems Ms. Mayer is attempting to recreate a culture found at Google in hopes that some “magic” will come about. I agree with Kara Swisher in that this decision reflects problems with management. If some employees working from home aren’t pulling their weight, fire them. That would send a better message should anyone working from home attempt to take too much advantage of their privilege. It reflects perhaps that managers don’t really know how to manage employees who work at home.

    The best solution seems to be to have an employee’s hours filled with a combination of home time and office time.

    Oh, and Yahoo’s “new” “improved” homepage sucks! In fact, every “innovation” of their homepage and mail in the last five years has been just window dressing, and the actual function of those services has not only not improved but has become more glitchy. The single-most consistent comment I’ve seen about Yahoo homepage and mail is that they aren’t as good as they used to be. I wonder if top management treats their customers the same as their employees: “we don’t care what your concerns are, we force you to use us the the we say”?

    • J__o__h__n

      I only use it now for movie listings (just out of habit, it isn’t especially good) and to check a nearly abandoned email account a couple times a week. 

      One size fits all solutions instead of good management is typical of bad companies. 

  • TVPC58

    Nursery: Another elitetist CEO. Employees should bring in their kids and pets…her nanny could watch them.

    Telecommutung: This has worked well in many federal govt. agencies. Conveys lack of trust to ban it. Many need telecommuting b/c spouse needs to be in a particular area far from a metro area (they’re a public health dentist/doctor).

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1425186388 Sense Galie

      I don’t want to comment on the poor quality/leadership of federal government agencies. personally (and as someone from an area where gov’t employment is prevalent) i know many gov’t employees. those who telework don’t work.

  • 1Brett1

    Maybe this is just a way to blame the employees for Yahoo’s poor performance and not the poor performance of management itself?

  • Fred_in_Newton_MA

    The labor movement has an opening into high tech, which reflects the widening societal disparity in wealth.  Management at large companies takes an ever-increasing share of corporate pay/perks, regardless of company performance, leaving even highly educated workers with stagnant compensation.  Being promoted to “boss” 50 years ago meant a moderate increase in pay, not the sultanic treasure trove bestowed upon today’s top brass.  These days, it goes without saying that Ms Mayer will be made fabulously wealthy, no matter how she leaves Yahoo, nor how it is left.  The work force will collect unemployment for 26 weeks, if they are lucky.  A unionized crew might be able to secure a more equitable work environment.

    • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

      Republicans promote the idea of America being a meritocracy yet the system as it works today performs more like a plutocracy or cleptocracy: those who work hard with commitment are rewarded by tiny increments in wages, if any at all. Profit sharing is a thing of the past. The fruit of their labors goes to those with power.

  • Jasoturner

    As a consultant, I quickly learned that deliverables and multipliers are what matter.  Not where you are or how much time things take (meaning I was never one of those 60 hour a week guys cause I could exceed my targets working 40.)  To me, forcing productive people to come to an office for the sake of having them in the office smells like micro-management.  But Ms. Mayer is a lot smarter than me.  Presumably she knows what she’s doing, but if I were an employee this would not help my morale.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/POKQL7NSHZJKTJYQMUZW6FP4W4 saga

    Yahoo is not a Tech company unlike Facebook, Google or twitter. Nor do I think they want to show themselves as a Tech company. At least not anymore. If Yahoo was really viewed as a bunch of engineers and scientists, Mayer’s decision would indeed  be difficult to these people. Yahoo is in trouble. as far as I am concerned, anything goes it could help the company.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1080903496 Tara Schulz Snow

    If the employees working from home at Yahoo are efficient and productive, then Yahoo wouldn’t be in the crisis it is in. Obviously a change is needed. Working is a privilege, not a right. If the employees are unhappy, they will leave and I imagine a new group of highly motivated, excited, grateful and talented group will be hired that may just be the key to turning the company around.

    • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

      Often times the problem lies not in execution, but in technical direction, vision and poor managerial leadership.
      I’ll wager that that a big factor at Yahoo and eclipses any  complications presented by working at home.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1425186388 Sense Galie

        Unfortunately, poor management never gets addressed. instead, lower level well-meaning, hard working talented employees get the ax while their bosses (ineffective managers) keep their jobs. this is a huge problem all over. yahoo’s doing poorly not due to the multitudes of rank and file…but poor management/leadership.

  • TyroneJ

     Even if that’s true, it’s irrelevant. It just underscores that Yahoo needs it’s workforce on site. There is a really interesting Business Insider article on this decision, which I’d put in the link except Disqus then won’t show my post. You can get to it by googling “Ex-Yahoos Confess: Marissa Mayer Is Right To Ban Working From Home”

    • J__o__h__n

      “You can get to it by googling”

      • hennorama

        Kinda says it all about Yahoo’s relevance in search, huh?

  • Gordon Green

    Despite the smiley faces in the language of the memo, it is breathtakingly arrogant given the reality of the special nursery, which I’m afraid is a critical part of the equation.  A heavy-handed boss who says do as I say not as I do is unlikely to get the best out of anyone.

  • Bill

    It is completely WRONG for her to build her own private “apartment” next to her office yet not allow any employees to have the same ability to be close to their families.  We do not have monarchies anymore.  This is another great example of how CEO’s are spoiled, overpaid, and the reason why our country is in dire straits. 

    I work for Lowe’s corporate, and have worked at other companies.  Telecommuting is NOT a problem if you intelligently manage your employees.  If telecommuting fails then it is a managerial failure.  Forcing employees to be chained to their desks does not promote work/life balance.  I get paid to work, not socialize.  And what makes this CEO think that I can understand these people from India who do NOT speak English well, just because they are next to me rather than over the phone?

  • Gregg Smith

    I get a lot more done when I leave the house and go to work. No distractions, focus and discipline are productive tools. I don’t have a boss.

  • Bill

    Bottom line is that managers need people sitting in chairs so their jobs are justified… 

  • Bill

    lol sorry to post again.  But my company is INTRICATELY tied to consultants overseas.  Most companies are for their technical departments.  Isn’t that hypocritical???  We telecommute with India all the time.  Yet we don’t allow our US employees to do it.

  • PithHelmut

    We need to know more about ourselves.  The RSA society is happy to disseminate this wonderful information about what motivates us strange creatures that we are: http://www.thersa.org/events/rsaanimate/animate/rsa-animate-drive 

  • Saddle Run

    Linus Torvalds works from home and Linux developer connect via web

  • 2Gary2


  • ICmy2cents

    One word: INNOVATION

    It’s a myth that people on there own are more creative or just as creative and innovative as a team.  IDEO, one of the worlds preeminent design firms has proved this over and over.  I’m sure all the Silicon Valley executives have read “The Art of Innovation” and this is precisely where Marissa Mayer seems to be coming from.  Those who make this a women’s issue, or a productivity issue are missing the point – would they rather stay at home and sink the company or get back to work even if it’s inconvenient?

  • http://www.facebook.com/johnkfitzpatrick John K. Fitzpatrick

    Work at home vs. not is a decision that the workers’ themselves should make, along with what to do with the profits and what to pay the CEO.

  • harverdphd

    Tom and crew:

    Thanks for giving our resident nanny-state-loving underachievers another rich person to hate.  How dare she… after years of study and work experience DARE, as chosen CEO, to tell people what to do?  It’s not FAIR….WAH!

  • Wm_James_from_Missouri

    Management hates labor it has become some kind of new a disease.

    Today, I was dispatched to one of my company’s accounts today and not allowed to use the bathroom ! Yes, true !
    I will keep you informed as to the final outcome of my battle over this issue. I hope I can resolve this issue.

  • http://profiles.google.com/rbracken56 robbie bracken

    Let her manage Yahoo as she wants, and stop second guessing her. Telecommuting just may not work for some/many employees. There is a huge sense of entitlement emanating from the Yahoo employees who are complaining, and the talking heads supporting them. Face to face is much superior to email or text or other e communication for real interaction. Who among us gets free food, free daycare, and all the other free perks that are being discussed ? So if Yahoo employees don’t want to come in, let them find work elsewhere…Google seems to have a model that works for them now. Who said one model would work forever. Tom A, geez your dramatic retelling and description of a “flexible techno utopianian vision with a dream workplace” is just overly-dramatic… and btw you are cutting off anyone  and everyone who disagrees with your viewpoint on tonight’s show…
    We professional working moms do not all support creating a utopian paid with benefits work life for all moms with young kids. Sometimes you just have to stop working or take a different position. Don’t blame working moms for this change and the choice of Yahoo to back off on telecommuting. This is not all about Moms. Perhaps all all these people working at home are not working to their maximum potential and are too isolated. The FB team you keep referring to apparently was working in a garage as a team, not at home alone. No one gets a guarantee, job parameters are not guaranteed or an entitlement, it is each company’s choice. Let each company make the decision they need to. So time and experience and work analysis may show that working at home isn’t efficient, you are not listening to your call-in speakers. 
    So if someone jumps ship, so be it, remember that the  bankers also whined that the best and brightest young banking recruits would leave if they were not overpaid and catered to. eh…we don’t need to over pay anyone, no company can afford that.

  • ElderKing

    I work from home full time for a large tech company (not Yahoo). My productivity hasn’t suffered and I’ve been doing this for years. The company is large enough that I have co-workers on the other side of the world that work when I sleep. We communicate via email, chat, have web conferences with them just the same as if I were in a traditional office here in the US therefore why should I work at an office? If Yahoo is anything like that then why change? File everyone in just to get on the speaker phone to talk to co-workers 10k miles away you’ll never meet in person anyway.

    I was posed with the same decision last year. Go back to a traditional office or find a new job. The justification was similar to Yahoo’s. I was prepared to leave because of it. My rationale was if I wanted to go back to that lifestyle I could find a job that paid more. My current employer doesn’t pay the industry best but these work at home benefits are great for my family so I stay. I think many in Yahoo will be weighing similar decisions now.

  • vassallj

    I’d love to work from home every day as well, but the fact is leadership means people wanting to follow you, and one can’t do that monitoring e-mail from their living room.  As it is too many managers say they have an “open door policy”, but never come out of their offices to interact with those they should be leading.  Good for Marissa Mayer for doing what she believes is necessary.

  • vassallj

    I’d like to work from home every day as well, but the reality of it is leadership can’t be done thru e-mail from the living room.  It requires in the office, on the spot mentoring on a day to day basis.  I already see too many managers claim they have an “open door” policy and then they never come out of their offices to extend themselves to the very people that need it.

    Good for Marissa Mayer for taking a stand.  She knows more of what is going on inside at Yahoo than any of us do.

  • andic_epipedon

    I hate working for corporations, because I don’t like dictatorships, but give me a break.  This new policy only becomes important if it lasts more than a month.  If its still in place in a month then we can scream and shout.  

  • Tyranipocrit

    Irony: a virtual cyberspace entity promoting home-incarceration is abandoning home-incarceration and the virtual realm to create home-incarceration.

    i hate the digital age–i hate that i am making a comment now on this blog.  But I never use social-networking–i think its sick and tarded. i hate that people stare at their ephones and drool of tech–that is nearly completely useless.  i hate cell phone noise pollution and the culture of ignoring the people you are with  to check your txt or browse your phone for nor reason or update your facef…page.  Its pathetic how people actually think they have friends online and thy consider this a human relationship.  Tech society is physically sickening because you are being sucked into a screen with all its em pollution and radiation. 

    people used to share music as a community–and music spread this way–and it created a bond–now people in in every way–tune into themselves, isolating themselves, incarcerating themselves into their homes, their ear buds, their mobile devices–often interrupting people rudely– and young people have no idea what real relationships are about–which will have dramatic degenerative effects on humanity, brain function, and emotional IQ. 

    It is so true–that life happens together in a community–the virtual world is not real and it’s lonely and cold and unhealthy in so many ways.  in a group you really do feed off each other and feel better.

    I think she is spot on.  I am 100 percent behind this cEo.  its starts with community–exchanging ideas, communicating in reality in person feeding off each other and creating bonds.  its important that the atmosphere is free and conformable and healthy–and innovative.

    Part of googlies success is the environment and the culture.  Every human group and organization has a culture.  Work at home is not a culture–it is voluntary incarceration and it is extremely unhealthy.

    Irony: a virtual cyberspace entity promoting home-incarceration is abandoning home-incarceration and the virtual realm to create home-incarceration.

    I am sure they can find a healthy balance.  What this CEO should do is give the employees more stock in the company–as in partnerships–the employees have incentive to make it the best company because the profits return to them–co–operative business model.  

    If these people jump ship–i say don’t let the door hit you on the way out–Yahoo will probably improve.  As it is now–Yahoo is non-existent–it sucks.  its pathetic.  Does anyone use it?  I thought yahoo died years ago.

    i say to the yahoos–be like google.

  • Tyranipocrit

    clearly yahoo has no brainpower–or they would more successful –it isnt working–so something new is needed–and clearly these stay at home yahoos are just yahoos and the company will be better without them.  yahoo doesnt even exist so clearly theses yahoos are not doing anything at home.

  • http://www.facebook.com/modiggi Mitchell Owens

    If working from home is more productive, why is Yahoo! in the financial crisis that it is in?  Perhaps the CEO is trying to take what obviously isn’t working and change it to stop the downhill ride the company is on.

  • Tyranipocrit

    is it too much to ask to ask yahoos to come in 2-3 days a week?  balance.  and the CEO needs to install fantastic innovative day care centers in every office where employees can drop in anytime–perhaps ther ei s away to innvite family into the office space.  And make the office co-operative google lek environment.  There are times when staying at home should be fine but not all the time–get in the office and join the community.  


  • http://mrcoles.com/ MrColes

    I disagree very strongly with the expert who said all the talent will jump ship.

    As a software developer who has worked at a startup and a large tech company, I think it is critical to have people working together in person if you want to make serious progress on a product. Furthermore, having the people who work together, like product/design/developers physically near each other, so it’s easy to quickly ask questions, pose ideas, be aware of what the others are doing, etc. It’s not an issue of face time for managers, it’s a matter of people who are working together to efficiently and effectively work together. I personally think that once in a while working from home is fine, some lax in hours is fine, but working from home can’t be the norm.

    Any “talent” who jumps ship for this rule is *already* someone who’s not going to help the company innovate.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1273328048 Tomasina Covell

    I do know that it’s impossible to simply e-mail Google, is Yahoo that evil yet?  Mayer looks like a hard right winger, and executive from ebay/paypal has to be nightmare you pray dies in a corporate jet crash, whether it’s an assassination or not.

    • JGC

      Please, let me interrupt for a moment to remind:  do not forget to make your generous contribution to your local NPR station. We value your negative energy as much as we treasure your positive bank account balance…

      • StilllHere

        You should get a commission if she does.

  • Moviegirl74

    Where are entry level employees working? If everyone is working from home, where are recent graduates and new members of the workforce learning work ethic? If everyone works from home, what does it mean to “professional?”

  • RetiredChemEngineer

    I was surprised by the flurry of “truisms” that went unsupported in this program.  Large sophisticated software development projects invest in modeling and optimizing the flow of work, data and information that ultimately results in their products and services.  Automation and tools are designed and implemented to facilitate the the optimal workflow.  Where the “actors” reside .. be they individuals, teams or devices .. is integral to the result. 

    While the optimized solution may support work from a distance solutions, the concept of “the internet is here and therefore we should all be working in self-defined contexts” is entirely without merit.

  • Kevin B

    What people don’t realize about IT is that it really IS a 24/7 job.  When something goes down at 2am, you’re on.  The reason that telecommuting is prevalent in IT is that many times, you will work all night, sleep the next day and then go back to days when suddenly something else goes wrong at 4am and you’re off to the races again.  Your schedule is flexible NOT because of your needs, but business needs. 

    I hope the next time they get paged in the middle of the night, they don’t answer.  Sorry, but I was so tired from the extra 90 minutes a day in traffic that I didn’t even hear the darn thing!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Spence-Blakely/1251757037 Spence Blakely

    Science says you can’t multitask if you must think. If you work from home you need something like one of those dual timers used for chess matches. Punch one when you’re working; punch the other when doing personal or family things. You may be surprised how many clock hours go by, before the work timer registers 8 hours.

    But, hey, if napping makes you more productive, science again, should that be work time?

    And what about the science, saying innovations come more from individuals thinking, than from group brainstorming? Let’s remember those collaboration commercials are scripted.

  • Michele

    I don’t have an issue with the policy writ large.  However, I believe that the best leaders, lead by example.  Building a nursery for your baby next to your office and then telling all employees (including those with small children) that they have to report to the office everyday is a bit hypocritical.  Not everyone has the financial wherewithal to install a nursery in the neighboring office or cubicle. 

  • http://www.skeeterbitesreport.com SkeeterVT

    That San Francisco Bay Area-based Yahoo! is requiring its employees to stop telecommuting and work at its offices is stupid for another reason aside from child-care issues: The company risks losing top talent by forcing them to spend a much  larger proportion of their personal and/or household budgets on transportation for what is arguably one of the most expensive — and time-consuming — commutes in the nation.

    Not only can the commute take an hour or longer for many of its employees who live in the Bay Area, but Californians — bar none — pay the highest gasoline prices in the country, anywhere between $4 and $5 a gallon. 

    I lived in the Bay Area from 1982 to 1994. Even then, the cost of commuting was outrageous. As I said, the new requirement is just plain stupid. It will cost Yahoo! far more than it will save.

  • NotChuck

    I thought that part of the telecommuting rationale was that it was socially responsible for using less fossil fuels.  Now Yahoo! employees are not only going to have to use more of it again to go to work, this change in policy comes at the same time that California announces an increase in their gas taxes to make theirs the highest in the nation!  Wonder if the employees will get a cost-of-living increase?  More fuel costs, higher taxes, child-care costs . . . .

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1425186388 Sense Galie

    There are lots of folks who abuse telecommuting – i see it every day…hands down. I’m not saying people shouldn’t telecommute, but there absolutely needs to be guidelines around this and accountability – and most often, there’s not.

    • ranndino

      True, but that’s easy. Have standups every morning where everyone talks about what they did the day before and what they’re planning to do today. It’s easy to spot those who don’t do much whether they’re physically in the office or not.

      There are plenty of people who don’t do any work even when they’re in the office so this isn’t a telecommuting problem. It’s a people problem.

  • ranndino

    I was skeptical from the very start. Ideology is never the domain of reasonable people so as much as the feminists think that modern women can do absolutely anything jumping to being a CEO of a major tech company while at the same time becoming a mother just isn’t possible. This isn’t some outdated chauvinistic view. It’s simply not possible to do a good job at both as each of these require a full time commitment if one has any hopes of success.

    Marissa is already showing that stress associated with both is getting to her because this is an absolutely boneheaded decision that ensures the best talent leaving / not coming to Yahoo. The last thing a tech company should do is try to become more like the stuffy big old financial firms. That goes completely against the tech culture. You’d think that someone like Marissa would understand that. What’s next? Everyone will have to wear a suit and tie to the office?

    It’s also an extremely bad PR/people move to prohibit people from working at home right after you’ve built your own kid a nursery right next to the office. She comes off as a completely detached from reality of most people’s lives rich brat. Not everyone has the ability to build a nursery next to the office or has an army of assistants handling all their personal affairs down to shopping for their clothes. The last thing you want to do as a new CEO is to alienate most of your employees by confirming that you live on a completely different planet from the one they call home.

    Overall, the media’s love affair with Marissa, which has now hit the skids, is based on the fact that she’s a relatively attractive young woman who was given the reigns of a major tech company. I am yet to be impressed by anything she has done (at least what’s publicly visible) or anything she’s said in interviews since taking over. Her interviews are full of cliches and corp speak without one iota of anything interesting, specific or creative. They’re about as interesting to watch as those of pro athletes of a struggling team after a game. We have to play together, pass more, score more than the opposing team to win, etc. Being a Yahoo CEO has been fun, being a mom has been fun, I like the Green Bay Packers because I’m from Wisconsin… Oh, and the next big thing in tech is mobile. Riveting!

    P.S. One thing she might want to look at is finally fixing the comment software on all Yahoo sites. It’s been broken for ages. Completely unreliable which is an embarrassment for a company that purports to be one of the tech leaders and is all about content.

  • ranndino

    Yes, many abuse telecommuting, but it’s easy to check if people are really working or not. Have standups every morning where everyone talks about what they did the day before and what they’re planning to do today. It’s easy to spot those who don’t do much whether they’re physically in the office or not. 

    There are plenty of people who don’t do any work even when they’re in the office so this isn’t a telecommuting problem. It’s a people problem.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/6JMZG5XWAOJSE74F7ILOKHI3CI gina

    Listened to your show at the gym this morning before going to my job as a manager for an overseas international organization. Thanks for the arguments, but I’m really surprised how one-sided it was. People don’t like freedom taken away once they have it, of course. But it seems a lot of your callers do not run organizations; do not see the benefit of having people together to rally around a common mission. Remote work does not allow for good ideas to be passed quickly, easily, nor energy towards projects and ideas to be exchanged. Yahoo has problems – she wants people to rally, feel the passion and beat out competition. No better way to do that then to bring the team together. I get it. If people don’t like it, they can quit. Too bad people upper management could not call in to your show. 

    By the way, I’m a women in my mid-30s soon planning on having a child. 

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