To ask all MNetters to boycott yahoo ...

(142 Posts)
theweekendisnear Sun 24-Feb-13 20:59:21

... because newish mum and newish CEO, Marissa Meyer, has just told yahoo employees that they cannot work flexibly from home anymore?

I am going to move my more-or-less 20-year-old yahoo account to gmail because of this. I am furious with this woman.

johnwomer Mon 17-Jun-13 13:51:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Pendeen Wed 06-Mar-13 17:17:19

"I am a nurse. Unless all my patients come to my house, I cannot work from home. No sympathy here, I'm afraid. "

What relevance does that have to jobs where flexible working is possible? Presumably when you became a nurse you were aware of the working conditions?

For me, if an employer took me on with flexible working as an integral part of the offer and then tried to make me go into an office every day I would be consulting an employment lawyer very quickly. It's a fundamental change in terms and conditions = constructive dismissal.

E320 Wed 06-Mar-13 13:02:02

If I understood the article correctly, the people checked up on were not putting in the hours they claimed. If you run a business you need your employees to put in the work. Sadly, there are always a few who take advantage, in this case to the detriment of those working properly from home.
I have just finished a contract at a very large, international organisation, where you could work from home, BUT on the couple of occasions that I did, it was very reluctantly allowed. The other downside was finding your big boss online at 05:30 and it now appears that he is checking up on former colleagues according to their online status. This would not happen if they were in the office.

Pendeen Wed 06-Mar-13 12:42:43

Quite right noblegiraffe, the article started by quoting their personnel manager Jackie Reses, so my apologies to Mayer...

noblegiraffe Wed 06-Mar-13 12:06:44

This article on the other hand says she looked at VPN login statistics and found those who were supposed to be working from home were taking the piss and not logging in to do their work.

ceeveebee Wed 06-Mar-13 11:53:31

She is the president and CEO of Yahoo

Pendeen Wed 06-Mar-13 11:32:07

From this article - the *real^ reason: "Mayer saw another side-benefit to making this move. She knows that some remote workers won't want to start coming into the office and so they will quit. That helps Yahoo, which needs to cut costs. It's a layoff that's not a layoff."

When on my 'year out' I worked for a practice that insisted everyone be in the office for 9am until 5.30pm unless you were on site visits or surveys. I absolutely hated it, especially the sheer waste of time commuting up to Truro every day.

BTW, this was in 2005 not the 1970s! I couldn't believe how archaic the partners were.

Now I work from home and the benefits are wonderful and I'm far more productive (even allowing for the fact it's my practice).

Oh, and she is not the 'CEO' of anything - only the head of personnel.

Marissa Mayer is possibly the best thing that has happened to Yahoo!

She has also started an initiative to get back "old yahoos" who has left (I am waiting for my phone call, Marissa, if you are reading this, give me a call, theres a dear)

There is another issue with working from home that has to be dealt with, and that is the possibility of security breaches. People working from home has access to a lot of Yahoo! back end systems, and you really dont want them outside the corporate network, but within the security of the building.

LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook has all experienced hacking and security breaches, I imagine she is keen to tighten security too, to prevent further security breaches.

To be perfectly honest, I would prefer an engineer who has access to the back end of my email account to work from an office, and not in some obscure living room/shed out in gooblediville.

"A lot of people, especially women, at Yahoo will no doubt have taken the job because they can do it from home."

I honestly doubt this is the case. Even when I was working there some of the engineers had such revered status that nobody said anything when they did not show up at the office. In the end it was rare for them to be in. I have a feeling this is the culture she is trying to clamp down on. I might be wrong though.

Dromedary Thu 28-Feb-13 18:26:01

In this country if it is agreed that you work from home then that is a contractual right. It's probably the same in the US, the difference being that in the US they can dismiss people on 1 week's notice for any or no reason with no right to bring an unfair dismissal claim. Pretty much what the Tories want to introduce here. A lot of people, especially women, at Yahoo will no doubt have taken the job because they can do it from home. They will now have no alternative but to leave. Imagine that happening to you - you are suddenly jobless and may well not be able to find another job.

bingodiva Thu 28-Feb-13 16:11:44

ive worked from home for nearly 4 years now and hate it - i would go back into the office at the drop of a hat. Fortunately i wouldnt have a big commute if i did go back. Working from the house is boring as there is no one to talk to at all during the day, there is no banter as there would be in the office, no one to go for coffe with or to lunch with. I dont need to be in an office to do my work as ive got all the tools i need to work remotely.

ExpatAl Thu 28-Feb-13 14:28:22

She's been given a tough job to get Yahoo back to the state it was and fit to fight in the competitive world today. They had workers who always worked remotely who nobody even knew existed - blatant free loaders. She did the most sensible thing and stopped it completely while she sorted it out. Nobody should ever take a job assuming that you can work from home exclusively unless your contract says so. Otherwise it should be assumed that you work in the office whenever required. Which in this case is always.

Sausageeggbacon Thu 28-Feb-13 13:13:03

I wonder how many mothers who use flexible working to reduce child care costs now face a massive hike in childcare or the loss of their job. If they took the job on the basis they could work from home then Yahoo ABU. Bet it will affect a lot more women than men.

sherbetpips Thu 28-Feb-13 12:53:14

I completely understand why she is doing it. We have whole departments in our company now where everyone is on flexi time/working from home. Arranging meetings is impossible and the person you need is never there.

Tolly81 Thu 28-Feb-13 11:29:04


Tolly81 Thu 28-Feb-13 11:27:58

Really disappointed with this thread, I though yahoo had actually done something dastardly but no you're down on a working mum who is trying to improve productivity and kick some employees into touch. I certainly won't be boycotting (although I have to say I barely use yahoo but if anything finding out there is a female CEO has enticed me to use it more). If she doesn't improve profits she will get fired along with a load of other people. She's doing it because it's not working for that business, not to be an un-family-friendly bitch. And I'm guessing she knows more about the company than you do. Women make up less than 10% of CEO and other top executive positions, I for one would like to see more support for them when they are trying to do a good job in hard times, not beat them with a "new mum and therefore should let everyone just hang out" stick. What else would you have her let her employees do? Barefoot lentil weaving?

There are pros and cons to home-working. For me, the point is that the yahoo ban appears to be against all homeworking, independent of personal circumstances or whether the job can be done (in whole or in part) as effectively from home.
To me, that shows a lack of flexibility and creativity and suggests also a lack of trust. I know I work harder and more effectivley if I don't have a four hour commute each day!

niceguy2 Thu 28-Feb-13 09:58:23

Much of it will depend upon the nature of the company and the geography of their offices.

I've WFH for nearly 8 years. I could go into my local office but there's noone else from my division there, let alone my direct team. So I'd still end up emailing them or calling/instant message. There's no difference. The people I work with are spread across multiple timezones and literally all over the world.

But if Yahoo are centred around a few offices then canning WFH could bring benefits. There are often times when I wish I could just push a few people into a meeting room and thrash things out. Telephone conference calls can be frustrating because you know you don't have the full attention of most people as they use the quiet periods to reply to emails, surf the net/whatever.

I also miss the camaraderie of being in the office. Those social interactions and relationships are often priceless when it comes to getting things done.

merrymouse Wed 27-Feb-13 21:58:16

Re: OP. I Would find it difficult to boycott yahoo, as I don't actually know what they do any more.

merrymouse Wed 27-Feb-13 21:52:41

Such is the nature of the game these days with BYOD etc. and cloud apps - we are all "on the job" 24/7 and geography is largely irrelevant.

Completely agree with this - you can't expect employees to only "work from home" on their own time. Flexibility works both ways.

merrymouse Wed 27-Feb-13 21:44:38

It's obvious that working from home will work for some better than others depending on their position and industry.

Having said that, for many employers, making the effort to allow people to work from home enables them to provide employees with a tangible benefit, at no extra cost to the company, and with no tax/NI. In fact, if you can also manage not to provide your employee with a computer, desk, heating or tea or coffee, you can save money.

I suspect that if there is a trend away from home working, it is because jobs are short and employers don't need to make the extra effort to maintain employees.

I also think a key word here is 'employer'. If you can work for yourself, you can choose where to work.

musicalfamily Wed 27-Feb-13 21:03:43

PS I agree about draconian measures and low employee morale only ends up costing the company talent, as the latter are the ones who can easily leave to find a better company to work for...!!

musicalfamily Wed 27-Feb-13 20:57:35

I have been working for multinationals all of my working life, and always worked from home to a certain degree. Since having children mostly worked from home. I am a project manager! It can be done.

Maybe it is because most of our teams are all over the world, it works really well. The company benefits as it can poole the best people for the job wherever they are - this is a huge benefit when resourcing projects/programmes of work.

I have never had issues where I've had to go and "see" people. It's never happened in 8 years where I have mainly worked from home. Customer wants face to face so we do travel to customers, but that's once in a while rather than every day or even week. And for those who comment about slacking off, no chance of that as we are target driven, customer facing, fast paced, nobody is ever off the hook and technology will chase you wherever you are!!

Dromedary Wed 27-Feb-13 20:54:11

The problem with companies being draconian, even assuming they can get away with it legally, is that it puts people off, and it's the good employees who can manage to leave to find somewhere nicer to work.
I met someone whose employer banned anything personal on staff's desks - for instance they were not allowed to bring in a single plant or photo.
Some employers will not allow any personal use of the internet at all at work. Some limit and monitor toilet breaks.
Etc etc.
The result is that people feel disrespected, undervalued, exploited, and they leave if they can, and take advantage where they can as a pay-back.

Dromedary Wed 27-Feb-13 20:50:29

Midnite scribbler - of course you put your children in childcare if you work from home, but many people save masses of commuting time, so find things like childcare a lot more manageable if they work from home.

OhGood Wed 27-Feb-13 20:34:19

Meant to say - my point is I don't think that 80% of the people need to be an office more than 80% of the time. It's just an inherited nonsense.

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