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Nevermind the Yahoos: Expert shares telecommuting tips

Feb. 28, 2013 at 1:06 PM ET

Kelly Sakai-O'Neill shared her tips for navigating common telecommuting perils.

Yahoo can Google it: Telecommuting is here to stay. Despite the leaked internal memo this week that showed the beleaguered search engine is dispatching with telecommuting privileges, work-from-home is the trend, not the exception. Research shows that workers who are allowed to telecommute can show boosted productivity, happiness and work life-balance, and for their employers, reduced turnover. The truth is in the data, but the perception remains among managers and workers that telecommuting is code for "goofing off on the clock."

Kelly Sakai-O'Neill, Senior Applied Research Manager for Families and Work Institute, joined TODAY Money readers in a fun and lively online chat to help debunk telecommuting myths, and give viewers the tools and confidence to ask for work-at-home time.

TODAY: Aren't there certain ineffable benefits from real-time face time collaboration lost in a telecommuting situation?

Sakai-O'Neill: There are so many more tools available today to also connect employees when you are in different locations. In our office, we've actually been using Google Hangout to bring in that feeling of being in the same office when we're miles away from each other.

Viewer Peggy: I think asking for telecommuting, or a different type of schedule can hurt your career. How do you get around that?

Sakai-O'Neill: Make sure you have a clear plan when you go in. Think about when you are going to be communicating with employees, how staff meetings will be handled, and how you should be measured. Be flexible about this too. Your manager might have some ideas on how they want this structured too.


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