Do people at your office work from home? Or maybe you’ve considered allowing this but have your doubts about how productive that really can be? Well it seems Inc. magazine was curious, and as they were tackling the concept in an upcoming edition, they thought they’d try it collectively as a staff. And what they discovered surprised them. The New York Times writes:
“I thought it would involve so much change that it wouldn’t be feasible,” Mr. Chafkin said.
Then Jane Berentson, Inc.’s editor, gave the go-ahead. And in February, the staff of about 30 — editors, reporters and producers — created the April issue outside of the business magazine’s office in Downtown Manhattan. The issue goes on sale on April 6.
The production went off without a major hitch, with the staff members using nothing more than readily available technology, including Skype and instant messaging. And Ms. Berentson described Mr. Chafkin’s cover piece, “The Office Is Dead. Long Live the Office,” which is infused with first-person details, as richer and more unusual than it would have been without the experiment.
“I think about the magazine industry and how we’re going to use all of this new technology, such as the iPad, but there’s innovation in this very basic way as well,” Ms. Berentson said. “Why are we in the office in the first place?”
Away from the office, some staff members struggled to adjust, Mr. Chafkin said, as minor technical hiccups arose and parents working at home had to find ways to separate their work from their children. But in the end, most employees discovered that they could and should work out of the office more often — though they did not want to eliminate the office entirely.