IBM: Remote working is great! ... For everyone except us

Big Blue thinks companies should do the thing it absolutely refuses to do


IBM, the company that just weeks ago said it was doing away with its work-from-home policy, is now preaching the benefits of telecommuting to customers.

Big Blue's Smarter Workforce Group says a recent panel it hosted at the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) conference concluded that customers who work remotely are "more engaged, have stronger trust in leadership and much stronger intention to stay."

"These findings mirror what an IBM Smarter Workforce Institute study found," the group wrote.

"Challenging the modern myths of remote working shares employee research revealing that remote workers are highly engaged, more likely to consider their workplaces as innovative, happier about their job prospects and less stressed than their more traditional, office-bound colleagues."

This is posted without any apparent sense of irony, as IBM said just weeks ago that remote workers were not part of its "recipe for success" and could no longer be permitted to work anywhere other than its six regional offices in various techie hubs around the US.

"There is only one recipe I know for success, particularly when we are in as much of a battle with Microsoft and the West Coast companies as we are, and that is by bringing great people with the right skills, give them the right tools, give them a mission, make sure they can analyze their results, put them in really creative inspiring locations and set them free," IBM marketing head Michelle Peluso said at the time.

"That's the recipe I have always relied on and counted on, and I know if we do that we can achieve extraordinary things."

Apparently, while IBM may only know one recipe for success, it is perfectly willing to pitch others on a suite of products made for an approach it is trying to kill off internally. Then again, given its run of twenty straight quarters of declining revenues, perhaps it's best that customers opt for their own recipes. ®

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