27 comments

  • Emily Campbell, over 7 years ago

    I have worked remotely and with an internationally-distributed team for over 2 years at my job, which is based in the bay area. Can someone please explain to me why VCs continue to insist that companies require their employees to live in the most expensive city in the county when there are so many examples of remote team working so well?! I live where my family and I are most happy, where I feel the most productive and inspired, where I am happiest, and and that reflects in my work and my work ethic.

    It's no wonder tech companies are complaining that it's so hard to hire the right talent - they are anchored in one place but there are thousands of fish in the sea!

    25 points
    • Darth BaneDarth Bane, over 7 years ago

      I'm going to guess the reason is mainly because it's hard for a manager to see what his/her employee is doing all day.

      I would argue that it doesn't matter, as long as the manager is good at setting up milestones and goals...but managers are usually control freaks in general.

      7 points
      • Cody IddingsCody Iddings, over 7 years ago

        They should use 15five.com

        1 point
        • Kurt MadsenKurt Madsen, over 7 years ago

          I hadn't seen this before. Have you used it? Do you find it effective? What do you like about it?

          0 points
          • Cody IddingsCody Iddings, over 7 years ago

            We do UX work for these guys and use the product. Inspired by Yvon Chouinard and his book "Let my People Go Surfing," it's about transparency across the company and letting people from the top down see what's going on and people from the bottom up feel heard. Streamlines management and employee reporting, too.

            0 points
      • Emily Campbell, over 7 years ago

        Unless you monitor your employee's desktops, emails, chat logs, etc there will always be people screwing off on the company's dime. I fully agree with you - effective management, including relinquishing some control to the employee so they feel ownership over their time and work, is the best solution.

        4 points
      • Mitch Malone, over 7 years ago

        managers are usually control freaks in general.

        I'm sorry if that's your perception of managers because that is absolutely not how they should be. Managers should only help you do your work. They facilitate, remove roadblocks, organize shit, plan, etc. If you need something, they get it. If you don't understand something, they clarify. If you have a problem, they help solve it for you. They shouldn't be in control of your work. They shouldn't be monitoring you like children. If they are, it's a failure of both the manager, the employee, and the culture, in my opinion.

        3 points
        • Darth BaneDarth Bane, over 7 years ago

          I didn't even mean it as a purely negative remark. I like control freaks, I am one myself.

          In my experience, people who become managers usually do so because of their people skills and controlling abilities.

          I agree with what you're saying about what a manager should be. But I think reality is that most managers aren't like that. My current CEO is a great manager (he's self-reflecting, delegates well and can be tough but still fair), but I've had way more bad ones than good ones in the past.

          What I mean by my comment above is that remote work can bring paranoia to a manager if he or she isn't good at planning projects. I find that the best possible way of working remotely is to have daily goals. If planned correctly, these goals should give the employee something to do for 7-8 hours.

          Daily goals means the manager won't even have to micromanage or check in on the employee. As long as the daily goals are done by midnight, no one should care how we got there.

          0 points
  • Anders Schmidt HansenAnders Schmidt Hansen, over 7 years ago

    Sad to hear. Though might not be that surprising. Sam Altman invests in Reddit (http://blog.samaltman.com/reddit), he is highly skeptical of remote work (http://startupclass.samaltman.com/courses/lec02/) and he is very influential as a startup advisor. It's just a thought, but that might explain why.

    11 points
    • Catalin CimpanuCatalin Cimpanu, over 7 years ago

      Sam Altman is a notorious "suit" He has no idea how to manage people. He only knows how to count money and add percentages. We've all met them in our line of work.

      7 points
      • Alex CampbellAlex Campbell, over 7 years ago

        Agreed, it wasn't until I watched his How to Start a Startup videos I understood how much he relies on platitudes, cliches and hackneyed notions from Paul Graham to "advise" startups. Needless to say he never mentioned Loopt nor any actual successful influence he's had on startups during his tenure at YC, it was all just earlier startups (Airbnb, Dropbox) that outpaced his own. Sad to see remote workers suffer in the same of his celebrity.

        6 points
    • Cameron GilesCameron Giles, over 7 years ago

      highly skeptical is hardly how I'd characterize his statements in lecture 2. he was referring to early stage startups. when early stage startups can change at any moment, it makes sense that he's skeptical of them in that context.

      0 points
  • Jared CJared C, over 7 years ago

    Honestly, who would ever even think their "1.0" or "2.0" versions of their ask was a good idea? Like, how did this make it through anyones filter.

    On another note, what a terrible call by Reddit. Absolutely sticks of pressure from investors. I think the only real result will be a flight of talent.

    6 points
  • Michael AleoMichael Aleo, over 7 years ago

    As a whole, that really sucks for remote people. Not everyone is single and living with roommates. When you have a family, it becomes nearly impossible to just suddenly uproot everything and go.

    So yeah, they fucked up by pulling the one week, no wait two weeks thing. But giving people until the end of the year is absolutely fair. That's almost three full months.

    Agree with it or not, a company can decide to centralize, just as a company can decide to become remote.

    4 points
    • Kyle ConradKyle Conrad, over 7 years ago

      Not only that, but they're paying for relocation if you do move. If not, then they're giving you a severance. That's pretty generous and something a lot of companies, even in the tech community, wouldn't do.

      9 points
      • Alex CampbellAlex Campbell, over 7 years ago

        Actually most tech companies here in SF & Silicon Valley (I saw that you're in Arlington, VA) are MUCH more generous with severance, decision and relocation period.

        2 points
        • Kyle ConradKyle Conrad, over 7 years ago (edited over 7 years ago )

          Entirely possible - I know that the big guys out there are, but even tech companies in NYC (yes, the well known names too) are pretty paltry with relocation pay and severance packages.

          1 point
          • Alex CampbellAlex Campbell, over 7 years ago

            Reddit is in San Francisco, not NYC (startup and tech company compensation is lower in NYC, despite the higher cost of living).

            0 points
      • Kurt MadsenKurt Madsen, over 7 years ago (edited over 7 years ago )

        For curiosity's sake, any idea what the relocation package looks like?

        I'd suspect that it's approached on a individual basis, but, if it lacks some standardization (perhaps a formula of sorts), that might end up feeling unfair to employees.

        0 points
        • Kyle ConradKyle Conrad, over 7 years ago

          I've been trying to find information about the relocation or severance packages to see what they look like, but haven't seen anything yet outside of wild speculation. I definitely imagine it's based on the individual circumstances though - probably easier for a company the size of Reddit to do that vs a larger company.

          0 points
  • Charlie PrattCharlie Pratt, over 7 years ago

    Money talks.

    1 point
  • Matt McDanielMatt McDaniel, over 7 years ago

    Didn't 37signals do this same thing?

    0 points
  • Hawke BassignaniHawke Bassignani, over 7 years ago

    Just curious... I didn't see anything in the article about whether the company was paying for the relocation? If I missed it, apologies!

    I assume they are for employees willing to move themselves ( ands their family).

    0 points
    • Kyle ConradKyle Conrad, over 7 years ago

      They're paying for relocation if you do decide to move (no idea how much or what not).

      If you don't want to move, they're paying a severance. Again, no idea how much, but still better than nothing.

      0 points
    • Alex CampbellAlex Campbell, over 7 years ago

      Relocation and severance are table stakes in SF/Silicon Valley. It's not clear whether the relocation will be enough for a family (maybe for a 20 something single person) and they don't appear to be going beyond that.

      1 point