90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
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

Guests

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.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Dec 19, 2014
Alan Gross, waves as he and his wife Judy leave following his statement at his lawyer's office in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. Gross was released from Cuba after 5 years in a Cuban prison. (AP)

Cuba reset. Russia’s rubble troubles. School massacre in Pakistan. Jeb explores 2016. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Dec 19, 2014
Soledad, and from left, Nina Pastori, and Lila Downs perform on stage at the Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year Tribute honoring Joan Manuel Serrat at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014, in Las Vegas. (AP)

From crossover hits to hip-hop to soul, we look at a big year in the wide world of Latin music.

RECENT
SHOWS
Dec 18, 2014
A poster for the movie "The Interview" is carried away by a worker after being pulled from a display case at a Carmike Cinemas movie theater, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP)

A big Sony hack gets weirder and wider. And Hollywood and Homeland Security are on edge.

 
Dec 18, 2014
This handout photo from the Twitter account of Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz. shows Alan Gross arriving at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. The US and Cuba have agreed to re-establish diplomatic relations and open economic and travel ties, marking a historic shift in U.S. policy toward the communist island after a half-century of enmity dating back to the Cold War, American officials said Wednesday. (AP)

Following months of secret talks the US will restore full diplomatic relations with Cuba after more than fifty years.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: December 19, 2014
Friday, Dec 19, 2014

Rage, shortlinks and things you people seem to be into, we guess. Also, Putin.

More »
Comment
 
Cosby Accuser Beverly Johnson: ‘He's A Black Man. I Had To Separate The Trayvon Martins, The Michael Browns From What Happened To Me’
Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014

Beverly Johnson accused comedian Bill Cosby of drugging her in a high-profile Vanity Fair column. She tells us why she waited so long to share her story, and why it was even harder to share now.

More »
2 Comments
 
Our Week In The Web: December 12, 2014
Friday, Dec 12, 2014

On listener engagement, the meeting of trans-Atlantic royalty and the elusive origins of the chicken. (We promise this feed hasn’t been taken over the BBC…yet)

More »
Comment