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Women for Women : The worst decision Marissa Mayer has made in her time as Yahoo CEO

“Some of the best decisions and insights come from hallway and cafeteria discussions, meeting new people, and impromptu team meetings.”

Jackie Rees, head of human resources at Yahoo!, on why the firm has banned executives from working from home.

Vickie Elmer writes … Let’s get this straight: Yahoo is a company that was supposed to move forward under new CEO Marissa Mayer, right?

Last week, she issued an edict that everyone at Yahoo must be in the office every day. That means all the customer-service staff and remote workers who live in the mountains of Colorado or in a condo on Miami Beach must either give up their jobs or relocate closer to a Yahoo office. 

What a fabulous way to step back in time, and lose talent to other more open-minded and flexible employers.  Some commenters on AllThingsD, which broke the news of the telecommuting ban at Yahoo, even speculated that the company is using the decision as a “stealth layoff.”

This is an especially discouraging move against parents who need an occasional at-home day when their child is sick or starring in a play at school. Mayer had her first child, Macallister, only five months ago, not long after she joined Yahoo from Google.

The decision, according to a Yahoo internal memo, aims to maximize “communication and collaboration.” The justification:

We need to be working side-by-side. That is why it is critical that we are all present in our offices.


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