« Freakonomics Radio

89. There’s Cake in the Breakroom!

2012-08-22 | 🔗
If you think working from home offers too many distractions, just think about what happens at the office.
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from a p M american public media and w and Y see This is breaking out ex radio on marketplace. There's a host of market place ass, big. It is freakin onyx time. Every couple of weeks we are talking with Stephen Dub nor CO, author of the books and the blog about the hidden side of everything. Eloped even attests, you have a nice com, peaceful, productive, the office today newsrooms, even though such thing right, although we are the dog days of summer, let me ask you this test. You ever fantasize about this working from home. Instead, setting up a little radio studio in your living room, and you could Lena look at your script from your favorite, easy chair with my
My lab well just between us is nobody's listening, yeah yeah yeah, I think about it all the time, but I don't think it's gonna happen. Well, you know the bosses tend to have a kind of standard line of thinking here that you know left your own devices. You'd spend Today you now watching cat videos or watering the guard whatever, and that's why it's sometimes called shirking from homer them working from home. But today I come test bearing evidence that working from home might actually be exerted really Zanu Europe's tokenistic paddling, petty I'm on air. I know preparing to fix this we need to see the need for this. Even I'm really sorry this pattern you need to get around it flew. Please continue. Yeah, ok,.
Oh, ah, I want to tell you about uninteresting experiment: ok to chinese company called see trip. Basically, the chinese version of expediency travel website. It's based in Shanghai. The company's got about fourteen thousand employees here is the company's co founder and Chairman James lay on the real estate in Shanghai, getting very expensive or thinking. Maybe we should
remove some people off home when the technology already there we saw today. This may be a very interesting academic subjective. You can do it more scientifically. Ok, see you ve got a boss here, whose thinking about saving on office rent by letting some people work at home but lay on, is not your typical boss. He was actually taking a break from running the company to get a phd in economics at Stanford, lay and that's where he met a labour economists named Nick Bloom and they decided to set up this work at home option as a real experiment. So what they did is they recruited five hundred see trip, volunteers employs half of whom were then randomly selected to work at home for the next nine months and the rest, which became the control group. They would keep working in the office. No here is Nick Bloom. Talking about what the company expected.
You get out of this experiment. They view. Is that save a lot of money on space and save a lot of money on lower attrition that lose and productivity? In effect, predator, do end up productivity went up. You're working at home in your productivity goes up exactly now now keep in mind these sea trip workers were essentially call center employees, ok, not all jobs earth as easily transferred to homes that, but that said, the home workers, the people who worked at home or about thirteen percent more productive than an equivalent group of office workers, here's bloom again whom they also started and stopped on time, because they didn't turn up like his commuting, o the plummeting turn up, although sick, etc. The rights of some of the gains test came from people simply working more hours at home, but home workers were also more efficient. Anything why? How can that be here is blooms? Explanation for that in the office is very noisy. You can hear the gone the fund next to the phone call the person across the best
Ankara's that boy furnished a split up with them is horribly distracted at loom, does make the important point that not all employees have the same preferences. Of course, some people, you and me maybe wanna work at home and will perform better there. Others, you know want to work in office, will perform better there right. So so Stephen, really what you're saying that you are you coming in to say goodbye to the unhappy Patty
I'm in the middle of work, got right velvet cake well, despite that, I really need you to. Let me finish this interview. Sorry I'll be right. There really ok sounds like you. Ve got a little bit of experience with office, distractions yourself, ass, justifying just for you have cut cupcakes, but nevertheless yeah now that set. It would be naive to think that homeworkers don't also get distracted, but the evidence here suggests it is distracting as home may be. The office, as you have experienced today, is even worse is the end on a different dimension. Getting to work can be bad for you to say so. Here's Christine hey nurse. Say, professor of public Health at Washington University. She recently finished a study on the health effects of commuting, so he found that people who came you no longer distances where less physically active, less physically Fettes wade more and arm had higher blood
than people who had shorter commute distances. Walls tat you ve got really need to show this job, those single, it's! Ok, you see, the valleys are kinda. The fifteen September how to make a decision about. Ok, let's go at the fifty or so we don't know. Ok! Thank you. Ok Even tell you really work at home. I think I just might have I you over. What had I not Stephen Dogma, are freakin objects corresponding puts out upon gas to you can get that on Itunes and hear more at freakin onyx dot com civil talking in a couple of weeks. I hope so thanks Two
on our next podcast. We talk about the shadow economy, that is all the activity, legal and otherwise that steeps the attention of the government, and especially the government's tax collector, ever wondered how big the shadow economy is. Next week, tell you. I'm freaking demonstrated. So we are sitting here where rosebreast it's good to see. My friend is good to see you also. We come from such different places. It turns out. There is a lot of overlap. Renegades point in the USA and in spite of my original had passed from higher ground missing free online Spotify
Transcript generated on 2021-03-16.