Furthest Right

Elusive Competence

Apparently virtual offices have revealed many incompetents:

Max Thowless-Reeves…a former UBS private banker who runs his own wealth management firm in Stafford…wrote a letter to the FT that made an arresting claim. “Mediocrity hides in offices,” he said, adding it was easier to identify which staff added the most value when all were working remotely.

During the pandemic, his firm had started using Google Docs a lot more, which meant people worked on the same material at the same time, from their respective homes.

“You can see everyone typing away on the same document,” he said, adding that this meant you could also see who responded snappily to a query, or made a useful suggestion, or generally contributed — and who did not.

“It just became clear to us — and it wasn’t beforehand — which team members were really driving us forward,” he said.

One wonders how much of our society has confused social activity — filling out TPS reports, hanging out at the water cooler, chatting up the company reps, and the like — for actual activity, since from a distance the two look the same to a middle manager.

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