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Does Matt Mullenweg's system work for utilities?

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  • Mar 29, 2021 8:31 pm GMT
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Matt Mullenweg, one of the founders of WordPress and the current CEO of Automatic, predicted that the pandemic would make distributed work normal. Here's a link to that celebratory blogpost he made almost a year ago. As he makes clear in the blog, Mullenweg has been dreaming of a distributed world since he started his career in the 2000's and sees the movement away from offices as a silver lining to the tragedy of COVID-19. The CEO, who attributes his companies' massive successes in part to the distributed model they run on, has been doing media laps all year trying to help other companies go mobile. Here's a link to his appearance on Sam Harris' Making Sense Podcast where he goes through the advantages to distributed work and how to make it happen. 

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Obviously, right now, it's impossible for utilities to go completely distributed. Grid operators need to be in the control rooms and technicians need to be on site to repair downed lines and such things. However, I don't think it will be long before some of that will go remote as well. Think about it, if the U.S.A. can fight wars largely remotely now with the help of drones and other robots, why won't workers be able to use similar technologies to do utility maintenance work? Cost is the most obvious answer—but we'll see robotics costs go down this decade. These advances will not only make work safer and more comfortable, but they will allow utilities, especially smaller ones, to seek out more talented employees. A power company in Kansas, for example, could recruit an engineer living in Brooklyn without having to convince him/her to leave New York. Or, even more intriguing, utilities could finally dig into the droves of international talent. 

How have your company's gone mobile this year? Do you think some of the changes will remain after the vaccine rollout is complete? Is there room for further distribution?

Henry Craver's picture
Thank Henry for the Post!
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