Why I consider Marissa Meyers decision a step in the right direction for Yahoo!


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There has been enough being said about Marissa Meyer’s memo to all Yahoo employees about asking all employees to report to work in office and not work remotely.

Most of the media and other leaders in the industry have gone on record saying that this is a step back into the past for Yahoo!

Most have shared statistics about the higher productivity that people have been reported among people working from home or remotely and how other organizations are fostering creativity and encouraging more people to work remotely.

I, however, agree that this is a step in the right direction for Yahoo! in the long term and my respect for Marissa has gone up tremendously for being able to take such a contradictory decision.

Yahoo! is at a stage where the company has been bereft of any game-changing innovations coming in from the organization. This is a classic case of an organization just drifting away and dying a slow death.

So, what Yahoo! needs right now is an infusion of new blood, vigor and a purpose!

What Yahoo! needs is a game changing innovation coming out of their kitty.

So, improving per employee productivity will not help this. Doing what you have always done will only get you the result that you have always got.

What this decision does is force people who are still interested in the future of the company to come together in a physical space. Others, who want the flexibility of tele-commuting could of course leave Yahoo!. In a way, such an exodus is also good for the company as this will give Marissa an opportunity to bring in new blood, with it new thinking, new

Also, this physical closeness, if managed well, can lead to a different culture within the organization, can create a new life-line for Yahoo! If any of you have worked in both close physical spaces and remotely on innovation projects (which I have done), you can attest to the fact that the physical closeness brings in additional dynamics to the team which helps the teams to work much closer and faster. The chances that the team comes up with a break-through innovation is much higher if the teams work together in a physical space.

So, I think Marissa’s decision is in the right direction, if she and her team can manage the next few weeks well and is able to put together diverse teams in each office to start working on disruptive innovation projects. If done well, this could be the spring-board that can bring Yahoo! back to the big leagues..

All I can say is “All the best Marissa and team! Forget about what everyone in the world say about this decision. Just put your heads & heart to coming up with a game changing innovation! Keep at it!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Mukesh Gupta
I currently work for SAP as Customer advocate. In this capacity, I am responsible to ensure that the voice of the customer is being heard and play the bridge between customers and SAP. Prior to joining SAP, I have worked with different organizations serving in different functions like customer service, logistics, production planning & sales, marketing and business development functions. I was also the founder-CEO of a start-up called "Innovative Enterprises". The venture was in the retail & distribution business. I blog at http://rmukeshgupta.com.


  1. You are dead wrong and the ironic part is that your main argument for it is precisely the best argument against her decision. My prediction is that she will end up reversing it because it will inevitably result in the best talent leaving / not coming to Yahoo regardless of whether you think these people are correct to expect a flexible working environment. The fact is that it now an expectation of the best in tech and many companies offer it. Yahoo has just become even less competitive that it already was. If she doesn’t admit to being wrong and reverse it this will be the final nail in Yahoo’s coffin.

  2. First, thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts..

    I do understand & agree to your point-of-view about the fact that this policy could result in some of its talent leaving Yahoo! due to the policy.. As a matter of fact, I do argue that this could prove to be a blessing in disguise for Yahoo! as this could provide an opportunity to infuse new people and thinking into Yahoo!

    I also agree that this is a bold step that could either revive Yahoo! or could be the final nail in its coffin!

    This debate aside, I think that Yahoo! needs a pivot in its business & business model and relevance in today’s world more than anything else.. Today, they are trying to be everything for everybody, in the process totally loosing focus. What they need to do is to identify a market segment and go after the segment with ferocious intent, disruptive innovation and extreme execution…

    I have been a Yahoo! customer (for email) since the time they started to provide that service and would feel really bad if they go into oblivion!


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