{ "media_type": "image", "post_content": "“Remote work empowers those who produce and disempowers those who have succeeded by being excellent diplomats and poor workers, along with those who have succeeded by always finding someone to blame for their failures.”", "post_id": "6106dbdc3cdab1002218762c", "reply_count": 17, "vote_count": 19, "bowl_id": "5565cfca8b2b9a03009acf57", "bowl_name": "Advertising" }
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Reads like someone who's never actually managed. Imagine being so naive as to ramble multiple paragraphs about how management is simply there to nag and be mean to you.

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As someone who has managed and been managed, I disagree and think while some of the delivery is incorrect, the author is correct in that a remote work environment does highlight bad managers and undercut the emphasis on office optics. It also flattens organizations and allows employees to build more cross team and cross functional relationships which empowers them.

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I’m a manager and I would like to stay remote. I do not find it difficult to interface with my team remotely, nor do I find it difficult to manage outputs, deadlines, collaboration, or trainings remotely. If you are good at mentoring, you are good at mentoring remotely. I do not see this across the board — my bosses are less good at it bc they are less digital-native — but if our structure were to stay the way it is I do think we’d keep improving at it.

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This is an opinion piece, and I find his opinion to be full of holes. Here are a few issues I have with this: First, his issue isn't really with in-person or WFH. It's primarily a piece about flatter work structure. He seems to think middle management are people who exist because of their ability to look/act busy, speak down to in meetings, or single people out in private. This is, of course, one way to see middle management. But also, he seems to ignore that the “acting busy, ” “talking down,” and “singling out” are 100% still happening. And from other pieces I've read on the topic, it's happening to a greater extent than it has in person. Second, he describes diplomacy as this:“When we are all in the same physical space, we are often evaluated not on our execution of our role but on our diplomacy—by which I mean our ability to kiss up to the right people rather than actually being a decent person.” I'm honestly surprised this got past an editor. This feels specific to the writer but is made to feel abstract to the reader. He paints a picture just enough for you to question the soft skill of diplomacy. Is that a worthy objective? Third, he describes management as a title rather than an action. We have all seen and experienced the differences between good and bad management. Guidance, leadership, collaboration, compromise are all management techniques. Those people who learn to master them and get people motivated in the proper direction are higher paid. Simple math helps this one: I’m good at making myself do work but can’t motivate others giving me a value of 1. I understand the role of making and I know how to motivate a team of 10 to create at a higher capacity giving me a value greater than 1 (I won’t say 10). That’s sometimes part pf scaling an operation. Finally, I'd say this was written with a massive chip on one's shoulder as if to show how highly successful his business has been run remotely. There is a chunk of us who understand there is a gray area between the black and white he's painted. Honestly, this is an embarrassing take from someone who runs a business. He has the same blindness as the people who he attempts to discredit in his opening graph. The fact that the editorial team didn't poke more firmly at his argument is a bit alarming. But maybe they were short on content for the week. relevant click bait tho 🙃

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Well said!!

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Would love to hear what specific points you disagree with D1.

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"As a society, we tend to consider management a title rather than a skill, something to promote people to, as well as a way in which you can abstract yourself from the work product. When you remove the physical office space—the place where people are yelled at in private offices or singled out in meetings—it becomes a lot harder to spook people as a type of management. In fact, your position at a company becomes more difficult to justify if all you do is delegate and nag people." - Cites nothing. Did any research go into this? - Physical office space is 'where people are yelled at in private offices or singled out in meetings'. What an immature view of what a physical workspace is. - All you do is 'delegate and nag people'. Lacks so much understanding. It just reads to me like someone who doesn't really have experience in what they're writing about, and maybe an axe to grind. I've read similarly themed articles in HBR which cite data, solutions, and understand the nuance of the broad set of organizational structures they're critiquing. This is more like a Twitter rant.

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I agree with his point about the title manager being a title rather than a skill. I’ve noticed most people don’t get any manager training. Managing people isn’t for everyone, yet it’s often the only way to move up and get more money.

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… or stay employed. Stay still as a practitioner and management will replace you with a younger worker. Probably not as effective as you, but cheaper.

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*Not written by a manager*

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In addition to the objective critique from Freelance 1, look the writer up on LinkedIn. EZPR has 4 employees (including the writer/owner) and he talks about his “all-remote agency” like it experiences the same challenges, opportunities and scale needs as an 80-person, 200-person or 1,000+ person agency. He doesn’t know anything about running an all-remote agency of any material size. It’s certainly more challenging than doing it with 4 people. One of the problems with opinion pieces and LinkedIn posts like this is people act like there is one right answer for every business based on their limited experience. There is not.

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