Almost twenty years ago, before it was fashionable, IVP’s first telecommuter, Dan Reid, set up shop two thousand miles from the home office. We thought it was an incredibly high-tech arrangement since we could communicate by mail, by phone, by fax and by CompuServe–a company that gave us the amazing capability of allowing two PCs (one in Seattle and one in Downers Grove) to exchange data and files via the phone lines. It was whacked-out futuristic in our minds. We actually managed in this primitive arrangement, if you can believe it, for a full five years before the internet connected us all in 1995.
Since then any number of IVP employees have entered the ranks of the telecommuting. But it takes more than technology to make telecommuting successful. Here’s some of the factors we’ve kept in mind that have helped it work for us.