Yesterday, Silicon Valley Analyst Jeremiah Owyang vaguely reported that executives are scared of their employees “working part-time (but paid full salary)” and “even working on side hustle startups,…
The reward system on the corporate ladder has become inextricably attached to a kind of professional abuse - that the only way to rise within a company is to be able to “take control” of a department and its people. This incentivizes those who are able to claim other people’s work and “make them” do things, while also actively deincentivizing being good at your job - middle managers are rewarded when they can take work from those who are good at their work but aren’t paid a manager’s salary.
The reason that remote work is so threatening to a lot of corporate thinkers is that it largely devalues the middle management layer that corporate society is built on. When you’re in person, a middle manager can walk the floors, “keep an eye on people” and, in meetings, “speak for the group.” While this can happen over Zoom and Slack, it becomes significantly more apparent who actually did the work, because you can digitally evaluate where the work is coming from.
“remote work inherently messes with the power dynamic of the worker and the boss, and it is going to make many, many brains malfunction.” The reason isn’t just about control, but the very fabric of how employment or contract work is designed, and the way in which we have been conditioned to view labor.