If Your Company Uses Tattleware To Track Employees, The Future of Work Will Still Happen. Just Without You In It.

Doing research

Think you need to micromanage to get results? You’re missing the point.  

Consider the executive who used to get up at 5:30 am for an hour and a half commute to get to his desk by 7 am. Toward what end? To prove that he is a dedicated executive.

“Unlike that old deodorant commercial, people need to see you sweat,” he said. “Even if you’re doing absolutely nothing productive.”

Should you decide to track your employees, be honest about it. How does snapping mug shots all day help build a “digital culture” of trust and inspiration where employees motivate themselves to be more productive?

The end game here is about proving physical presence. But what actual impact does physical presence have on productivity?

According to a recent report from Upwork, one of the leading global talent marketplace providers,  studies show that those who work remotely are almost fifty percent more productive.

“There is nothing virtual about human behavior. Most people don’t do their best work with their boss looking over their shoulder at every keystroke. It conveys distrust, even disrespect,” said LinLee Vanderhoof, Regional Finance & Operations Director at Zenitel based in Norway.

She is considering using Overpass to scale her salesforce into new markets that had previously been cost-prohibitive to pursue.

Employee autonomy can be a terrifying concept for the old guard. But human resource experts say that, whether they are employees or independents, people don’t work for you; they work for themselves and their families.

Command and control cultures struggle to translate their models in the new environment, which represents a seismic shift to the “age of empowerment” and trust. A rapid one, as the pace of innovation, grows exponentially.

Per Warren Buffet, as reported in the November 25 issue of Inc. Magazine, if you hire for integrity from the beginning, you will establish “high trust teams” that you don’t need to micromanage.  “Integrity is non-negotiable,” he said.

Lavie Popack, CEO of Overpass, the nation’s only vertical talent marketplace focused exclusively on connecting salespeople to the hiring managers who need them, said, “Managing a remote workforce feels like chaos because managers can’t see people working all day. That’s why companies are still scrambling to centralize operations and bring everyone back to the office, thinking that everything will return to the way it was before. It won’t.”

Cue villain music and enter Sneak, the always-on, always listening, and always using the computer’s camera to take pictures of workers sitting in front of their computers every 5 minutes. The brand name, Sneak, was reportedly just an unfortunate coincidence.

Of course, the new “work from anywhere” distributed workforce model is far from a panacea. Yet, over a dozen executives and business owners who are widely known to reject the distributed work movement refused to go on record with their commitment to the traditional work model.

Regardless, Overpass marches on, making compensation and performance transparent on its platform, so everyone competes on a level playing field regardless of age, gender, race, nationality, or where they live. It doesn’t use tattleware. Instead, it provides relevant information to its users about who to hire and rewards the best performers purely on merit.

Overpass competes in the same global talent marketplace with Upwork, Fiverr, Toptal, freelancer.com, and others except as a specialist in sales. It operates an optional software to track phone calls and emails with the full knowledge of its independent salespeople. Hence, there is no expectation of privacy about activity and performance.

“I have clients in the US who have reached the saturation point, and the only way to grow is to expand into the European market. On the flip side, I have clients in the UK who need to expand into the US Market,” said Overpass CEO Lavie Popack. “One client recently expanded into a new market with five salespeople in a week.”

Following up on the executive’s career path cited earlier, after his company sent him home during the pandemic,  he had time to assess what he wanted out of his life and career. He realized he didn’t ever want to return to that nightmare commute again.

He joined the Great Resignation movement and started his own business.

According to the Census Bureau, in January 2021, people started 500,000 new businesses.  Former employees opened more than 4.4 million new businesses in the U.S. in 2020. That’s the highest total on record.

People who want to control their destiny don’t want to be employees.

Of course, the official company line is that its euphemistically coined “tattleware” is designed to help colleagues stay “connected” throughout the workday.

One of the most challenging adjustments for employees to make to the new way of working is feeling isolated and disconnected. Maybe Sneak addresses that emotional hurdle and just so happens to have an unfortunate brand name.

Regardless, management models need to evolve as the future of work unfolds at the fastest pace in the history of technology. As Popack pointed out, “it’s less about controlling people than giving them the tools they need to perform at their best with a minimum of supervision and oversight.”

Bosses out of their element need to morph from mere managers into leaders who inspire and bring out the best in their people no matter where they work, rendering tattleware obsolete.