Pros of telecommuting and cons of Heathrow

January 31, 2008 at 3:42 am | Posted in Adding capacity, Heathrow airport, Heathrow expansion, Online, Telecommuting, Time differences, Videoconferencing | 2 Comments

Although the wool is indeed being pulled over our eyes about plans for the future of Heathrow, the con is not that there is plenty of spare capacity at LHR and we are being told otherwise (as in the linked article—The great Heathrow con—in my previous post). Currently, as anyone who regularly sits high up in one of the four stacks above the remote corners of Heathrow area can attest, the runways are being used to capacity … so please don’t advocate changes to that operational usage: we need less flights, not more.

The con is the way in which Future Heathrow has slipped airport expansion into our lives with an “Expand or Die!” threat—adding capacity at Heathrow airport because we are instructed it is absolutely necessary, being completely natural and utterly life-giving as it is (for some).

Expand or die? Isn’t that the cry of a dying imperialist? (Or is it really from the Rules of Acquisition in Star Trek?!)

It is so easy to work long-distance, once you have established trust and good relationships. The reason for frequent routine face-to-face meetings is far less justifiable now than it was twenty years ago. Of course, travel for personal contact is necessary and enjoyable, but there are still plenty of boondoggles.

Working from home, even with an eight-hour time difference like mine (LHR-SFO), instead of travelling every week, as I used to, can be very pleasant—it’s definitely cost-effective and often more fun, with greater freedom to get out while others are stuck in offices. Commuting online is quite climate-friendly and jet-lag free, despite the late nights 😉



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  1. Telecommuting is definitely the way to go. It’s a rough weekly commute from London to San Fran. It is definitely cost effective, I do it myself and just video conference in for meetings. Doesn’t cost a cent because I use ooVoo which lets six of us video conference at one. Anyway, cheers to telecommuting! You must get to sleep in from time to time working with people in san fran while you are in london 🙂

  2. Yes, I would get to sleep in, if I did not have to get the kids to school on time 😉
    Telecommuting is definitely the way to go. It is particularly good to have a network of long-distance friends who also work from home, as not only can we chat online during ‘coffeebreaks’, but we also make arrangements to stay overnight with good old friends when meetings take us far from home. Better than staying in a hotel!

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