The Telecommuting Experiment

jon udellThe last time I wrote the word telecommuting in earnest was in “The Sincere Innocence of Jon Udell”—in 2006! Before my contract at Amgen ended this Friday, two telecommuting opportunities came to me (in quite an active IT market). I accepted an offer for one of them. Clearly I have been “waiting” for this opportunity for over four years.

In “Careful Remarks about My (Microsoft-based) IT Job Market,” I deliberately did not use the word Amgen as I wrote, “So far, I have surrendered myself to Thousand Oaks—about 40 miles north of Santa Monica as the crow flies.” I dared not to speak of Amgen in part because of all of those non-disclosure agreements and security clearances but also because of the location of Amgen—a grueling commute from Culver City to Thousand Oaks for nine months!

Driving to Thousand Oaks was worth it. Amgen has the best Microsoft shop I have ever experienced personally. And I am very, very confident that one can draw a circle with a 30-mile radius centered on Culver City and every business enterprise using Microsoft products are nowhere close to what is going on at Amgen—and Amgen has lots of room for improvement. I have written this flippant statement being fully aware of Sony, William O’Neil, Canon Communications, 20th Century Fox Filmed/Home Entertainment, (Beverly Hills), Universal Studios, CCH Computax, Inc., UCLA MCCS (obviously), etc. So my asinine point is that you should find decent Microsoft shops closer to Ventura County and Orange County—nowhere near the heart of Los Angeles County. I am very curious about what an informed Microsoft representative would say about this—Bill Gates would demand numbers, real data on what is going here.

I’m not ready to move closer to Ventura County or Orange County so telecommuting should help me get ready.

So: what makes journaling fun (for me) is listing a few wild assertions and see what happens by reading them months later…

  • I will get at least two hours a day back from commuting.
  • This telecommuting position should introduce me to serious home office habits. I’m talking new lights, chairs, social media tools and work habits.
  • Working at home should vastly improve my already improved cooking skills.
  • It is possible that I can reduce the need for bottled water by developing water purifier practices.
  • I will learn to turn various locations in a city into my office being quite creative and productive—and healthier (e.g. getting more sun).
  • I will have the privilege of being in actual need of human contact such that family and friends are more accessible but at the same time not hindrance to my work.
  • I will be able to visit my eye doctor, dentist, barber, etc.
  • I will save money. Seriously.This ‘experiment’ is slated to last for six months. Let’s see what happens…