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offsite work on an agile team

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  • jeff_olfert
    Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)? If so what are some of the good
    Message 1 of 9 , Sep 7, 2006
      Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
      allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?

      If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?
    • Phlip
      ... None whatsoever. A junior programmer should pair, to learn. So that s onsite. If a senior programmer tries to say, my contribution is so valuable, I
      Message 2 of 9 , Sep 7, 2006
        jeff_olfert wrote:

        > Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
        > allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?
        >
        > If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?

        None whatsoever.

        A junior programmer should pair, to learn. So that's onsite.

        If a senior programmer tries to say, "my contribution is so valuable,
        I should telecommute forever", then that person should work in a
        consultant role. Only the team should do whatever this guru does
        that's so awesome. So if the guru wants time at home, just give them
        flextime or hourly work.

        So given the choice between hiring one remote senior or two local
        juniors, go with the pair.

        --
        Phlip
        http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?ZeekLand <-- NOT a blog!!
      • William Pietri
        ... When you say the team is agile, how agile are we talking here? I would expect the cost to vary a lot depending on the team s current working style. William
        Message 3 of 9 , Sep 7, 2006
          jeff_olfert wrote:
          > Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
          > allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?
          >
          > If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?

          When you say the team is agile, how agile are we talking here? I would
          expect the cost to vary a lot depending on the team's current working
          style.

          William
        • Arrowood, Paul (ELS-STL)
          If so, please send me a Job App! :-) _____ From: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com [mailto:extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of jeff_olfert Sent:
          Message 4 of 9 , Sep 7, 2006
            If so, please send me a Job App! :-)



            _____

            From: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
            [mailto:extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of jeff_olfert
            Sent: Thursday, September 07, 2006 10:44 AM
            To: extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [XP] offsite work on an agile team



            Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
            allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?

            If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • William Pietri
            ... That was my first reaction, but I can think of cases where it might make sense. If the team is a well-jelled XP team, the contributor is valuable, and
            Message 5 of 9 , Sep 7, 2006
              Phlip wrote:
              > jeff_olfert wrote:
              >
              >
              >> Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
              >> allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?
              >>
              >> If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?
              >>
              >
              > None whatsoever.
              >

              That was my first reaction, but I can think of cases where it might make
              sense. If the team is a well-jelled XP team, the contributor is
              valuable, and people are willing to stretch a little, then I'd say it
              would be worth trying remote pairing and some telepresence before just
              firing the guy.

              But I'd want to see the team jointly decide to try it as an experiment
              with regular careful evaluation to make sure the benefits really
              outweighed the costs.


              William
            • Phlip
              ... Actually, I forgot how IM makes remote pairing feasible. (cf this weeks Doonesbury!) Nevermind! -- Phlip http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?ZeekLand
              Message 6 of 9 , Sep 7, 2006
                William Pietri wrote:

                > > None whatsoever.

                > That was my first reaction

                Actually, I forgot how IM makes remote pairing feasible. (cf this
                weeks Doonesbury!)

                Nevermind!

                --
                Phlip
                http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?ZeekLand <-- NOT a blog!!
              • Ron Jeffries
                Hello jeff_olfert, thank you for the thoughts quoted here. On ... Really useful person; job doesn t require much interaction; they make service calls in
                Message 7 of 9 , Sep 7, 2006
                  Hello jeff_olfert, thank you for the thoughts quoted here. On
                  Thursday, September 7, 2006, at 11:43:45 AM, you wrote:

                  > Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
                  > allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?

                  > If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?

                  Really useful person; job doesn't require much interaction; they
                  make service calls in Kalamazoo and HQ is in Bangor; inexpensive
                  employee; personal hardship and compassionate employer ...

                  Ron Jeffries
                  www.XProgramming.com
                  Think! -- Aretha Franklin
                • Doug Swartz
                  ... This is exactly what we ve done - twice. Both team members were very good contributors to a well established team. One s spouse got a job in another state.
                  Message 8 of 9 , Sep 9, 2006
                    Thursday, September 07, 2006, 11:05:39 AM, William Pietri wrote:

                    > Phlip wrote:
                    >> jeff_olfert wrote:
                    >>
                    >>
                    >>> Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
                    >>> allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?
                    >>>
                    >>> If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?
                    >>>
                    >>
                    >> None whatsoever.
                    >>

                    > That was my first reaction, but I can think of cases where it might make
                    > sense. If the team is a well-jelled XP team, the contributor is
                    > valuable, and people are willing to stretch a little, then I'd say it
                    > would be worth trying remote pairing and some telepresence before just
                    > firing the guy.

                    > But I'd want to see the team jointly decide to try it as an experiment
                    > with regular careful evaluation to make sure the benefits really
                    > outweighed the costs.

                    This is exactly what we've done - twice. Both team members
                    were very good contributors to a well established team. One's
                    spouse got a job in another state. The other had family needs
                    in another state. We did formal evaluations of "how it is
                    working" every couple of months.

                    We worked to keep the practices effective: We flew the
                    remote team members in to the central site a few days each
                    month. We used long pairing phone calls, shared VNC sessions
                    and IM a lot. We installed a remote controlled camera in the
                    team room so the remote people can see what's going on.

                    Both team members reported needing to work significantly
                    harder to be as effective with the team when remote, as
                    compared to when being local.

                    We no longer have any telecommuting team members. One of them
                    moved back after a couple of years. The other took a job in
                    his new location after a couple of years.

                    Our overall evaluation: We would not hire a telecommuter off
                    the street. We would consider telecommuting again for a valuable
                    team member with a real need to live elsewhere. We would not
                    have more than one telecommuter on a team.

                    --

                    Doug Swartz
                    daswartz@...
                  • mnbluesguy
                    ... It depends. ... Well I can tell you from both a former telecommuter (in the traditional PM role) and as a ScrumMaster with a telecommuting contractor that
                    Message 9 of 9 , Sep 12, 2006
                      > Are there any good reasons for an employer (say a 300 person company) to
                      > allow an employee to work offsite (telecommute)?
                      It depends.


                      > If so what are some of the good reasons you can think of?

                      Well I can tell you from both a former telecommuter (in the
                      traditional PM role) and as a ScrumMaster with a telecommuting
                      contractor that telecommuting can work. It requires everyone involved
                      to be flexible.

                      90% of our team is in Topeka KS and we have one member in St. Louis,
                      MO. Our telecommuting member has worked for the company off & on for
                      years. He moved for his wife's job. Because he has always been a top
                      performer they offered him the telecommuting contractor position. On
                      our team he participates in daily standups, iteration planning, and
                      other meeting via the phone. We use IM alot. He does come in every
                      once in a while.

                      The good reasons in this case are great business knowledge, excellent
                      team player, technical skills that are on par with anyone in the
                      organization, and a very flexible person. Since he is a contractor if
                      things don't work out we would end the relationship.
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