Posted by: Ed Becker | February 2, 2009

Web-Worker Tools



Many employees dream of becoming a teleworker, staying home all day and accomplishing the work of two people.  Not all managers will agree that is to the organization’s advantage.  Your author has been on both sides of the equation.  Telecommuting works when assigned to the right employees under the right circumstances.  What is an employee to do?  You can try to educate your supervisor, but there is another route I would recommend. 

I call the approach, PROOF OF CONCEPT!  BEWARE… will be placing yourself into a position even more scrutiny of your work in the home office than you would have in your cubicle.  This is the price you must be willing to pay to have a commute that is only the stairs in your home, or a short drive to a local telecommuter center.  Begin by re-casting yourself as a “Web Worker” and drop the telecommuter word…too many bad experiences under that name.  Web Worker is much more active!

WHAT IS A PROOF OF CONCEPT?  Show your manager how it will work, how they can manage and measure your performance, and begin by implementing web-based tools from your cubicle.  Showing may be your most persuasive tool.  This series will provide you with a number of tools that may be of help.

Today’s tool recommendation is an online task list.  Like many of the tools available, there is a free account with limited functionality, and a paid account, with enhanced functionality. 

The recommended Web-based to-do list is called Remember the Milk (RTM).  RTM manages your task list, and it links to a number of others Internet services that allow the Web Workers and their managers to add new tasks and get reminders on what to do next. It will send reminders to many web services. It will help to organize tasks as well: Keep your work to-dos separate from your personal to -do list. As a web-based tool, you will be able to access your tasks anywhere you have Internet access or even have near real-time updates through an RSS reader.

Your manager benefits because you can share your tasks, and vice versa, as long as both of you have an RTM account.  RTM offers the option to make tasks public for anyone to read. Sharing a full list makes the tasks read-only to the user on the other end; share individual tasks with your team members and they can edit them.  More next time……


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