When I tell people I live and work in Montana, sometimes I get puzzled expressions or even jokes. The skiers and fly fisherman understand. But some people ask: Are there phones there?
Yes, there are phones in Montana! Even broadband, and sometimes fiber. We have laptops, airports and universities, too, though they might be scattered between spectacular mountain scenery and two National Parks. When I'm not biking, skiing, or chasing kids, I spend the rest of my of my day like the rest of you: digitally communicating using collaborative tools, email and social media.
This raises some questions, such as — has technology made telecommuting easier? And can you be productive telecommuting? The connected worker is a hot topic these days. Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer last year banned telecommuting, even though she has trouble waking up for meetings. Maybe if she worked at home she would have more time to catch up on sleep.
And the debate took on new life today when a a new law went into effect in the United Kingdom. It gives every employee in the UK the right to work flexibly if they have been on the job for more than six months.