The digital workplace…and the weather!

As many of you in the UK already know we experienced some bad winter weather in January (yes, even snow in Brighton!).  I have seen my neighbours struggling to get their cars started to drive through the snow and ice on the roads.  Other neighbours who commute to work by train have seen these cancelled or delayed because of problems caused by the bad weather.

All these I have heard or seen while working from my digital workplace, nice and warm, broadband connection strong and reliable, reflecting on the difference in my working day compared to theirs.  Judging by the time they leave for and get back from work, the expressions on their faces, and their conversations at the weekend it makes me appreciate how good my workplace is.  I also am sure I was more productive work-wise as well as being happier.

I believe this boils down to another example of what is a good “work/life balance”.  I can choose where I work – home, local hub, cafe, etc. – so it suits me for whatever I need to do each day.  Obviously running my own business gives me 100% flexibility.  But even if I was working for an organisation shouldn’t I be able to choose where I work that is of benefit to me as well as my employer?

Thankfully I also heard other neighbours and friends were able to work from home instead of their office while travelling was difficult.  Even better most of these were asked by their employer or got quick agreement to their request to work away from their normal place of work.

I do wonder how the recent bad winters in the UK, plus London-based financial and other major businesses learning from the Olympics and Paralympics experience, is helping to raise the level of awareness about the benefits of the digital workplace.  Combining better business resilience and employees availability is a winning combination!

From a work/life balance it’s pretty good to use a digital workplace when the weather is sunny and warm in the summer too.  And it’s very nice in the spring and autumn too in my humble opinion.

What do you do when the weather is bad?  Do you see a trend where you work for more people able to choose where they work when weather conditions are bad?

2 responses to “The digital workplace…and the weather!

  1. People in my office will often bring their laptops home if the weather is predicted to be bad the next day. We are often teleconferencing when we are at the office, so we are really just changing where we teleconference from. I like working with my colleagues at the office but it is nice to have an alternative.

  2. I’m not exactly proud to admit that I recently was one of the people who desparately(?) tried to make it to work during a blizzard not too long ago. I was one-fourth of the way on my 1-hour commute and it had taken 35 minutes when I decided to turn back – and one hour later I was home. The result: 1.5 hours wasted on the road. Back home I couldn’t help but wonder why I didn’t take advantage of the fact that I am one of the lucky ones who can work when and where I like.

    As a firm believer in the digital workplace I think that we need a change of mindset. It shouldn’t be “Oh %¤#@& I can’t get to the office today” – If you don’t need to be in the office then don’t go. Yes, there are many distractions at home and, yes, it takes a bit of trial and error to become productive but if you have the opportunity to put the digital workplace to the test – you owe it to yourself to try it out. Maybe the next snow day will be seen as a bliss not as a damn blizzard!

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