On Abovethelaw.com, lawyer-journalist Kathryn Rubino focuses on the specific situation of a a young lawyer at a law firm. She is also a mom.
Although that lawyer reports for duty earlier than most at the firm and after leaving continues working at home, this mom knows she has lost an edge by exiting at 6:00 P.M. Face time is face time. It has to be performed in person, in real time.Here her whole story is told in Corporette Mom.
There are few career paths on which heavy face time isn't a must-do.
When I joined an oil company as a ghostwriter/speechwriter in 1979, I worked at home on my first Sunday. I had come to the office the day before, that is, on Saturday. Monday, my colleagues clued me in that everyone shows up in the office seven days a week.
The same ritual prevailed in the auto industry in the early 1980s. Only once was mercy shown. It was after 9:00 P.M. As is typical in the midwest, it began snowing heavily. The section chief swung by and advised us to leave and continue our work at home.
During an interview for marketing communications at a health insurer in the late 1990s, in Hartford, Connecticut, I was explicitly told face time would begin before 8:00 A.M. and continue until after 7:00 P.M. By this stage of my career, I didn't have to put up with that. I was succeeding as a consultant.
Even in consulting, though, face time still counts. So many in-house managers who contract out assignments told me: We tend to give the work to the last vendor we had met in person. We recall that person.
Currently, in a consulting world of global telecommuting, there still is face time. That happens through Skype, the face time feature on iPhone and all sorts of video gadgets for meetings. That should be reinforced with gift cards sent digitally at the end of a project to those in charge. You bet, that imprints your face in the collective memory bank of the powers that be.
Takeaway: Talent has to be attached to a face.
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