After listening to the presentations on Wednesday, I was really intrigued by the information given on the virtual office. I had not idea that some companies existed without having a physical office and further, conducted all of their daily business strictly from laptops and cell phones. While this option is great for small companies who don’t have the funds to shell out huge amounts of money for an office space, I think a very vital component of work life is lost: daily face-to face communication. Human interaction is possibly one of my most important aspects of my day. I can’t imagine the day when I only talked to people from my home and on my cell phone- that sounds miserable.
At the beginning of our reading this week there is a quote by Voltaire that states, “Work keeps at bay three great evils: boredom, vice, and need.” I believe Voltaire makes a simple yet truthful point. As discussed in the presentation, there are positives to a virtual office, and there are also an abundance of negatives that include the some of these “evils.” For one, boredom is definitely a risk in my eyes. Certain types of the teleworkers breed isolation. What if you have ideas for a new pitch or questions you just quickly want to bounce off some of your coworkers? There’s no one around. In addition to that, as mentioned in the presentation, isolation can hurt you when it comes time for raises and promotions. When you are never at the office, it gives the idea that you aren’t really adding anything to the company or organization.
I know this shift is probably inevitable, but is it really a positive change? There are still so many unanswered questions. Which form of telework would be the less destructive to the physical office space? Will there be a balance of the physical and the virtual office? Would you feel comfortable working in a virtual office, or would you even want to?