Page 23 - Foreign Service Journal - April 2012

This is a SEO version of Foreign Service Journal - April 2012. Click here to view full version

« Previous Page Table of Contents Next Page »
A P R I L 2 0 1 2 / F O R E I G N S E R V I C E J O U R N A L
teleworkers make their case. A
Brigham Young University study
last year, for example, found that
teleworkers tended to put in
hours than their counterparts at the
workplace. At the same time, they
were also able to better balance
work and family obligations.
Another report, by the Telework
Research Network, a firm that ad-
vises companies on setting up tele-
work plans, found that companies that allow employees to
telework can save as much as $10,000 a year in real estate,
electricity and other costs. It also helps companies avoid
having to train new workers.
Seeking such opportunities with the federal govern-
ment, as Carl Henriksen did, is particularly promising. In
2010, Congress passed legislation requiring agencies to de-
velop plans to encourage teleworking and ordered the
White House’s Office of Personnel Management to report
back annually on their progress. So
far, the numbers are encouraging.
Last year, OPM reported that
11,046 more employees were work-
ing outside the office in 2009 than in
the previous year, and that nearly 6
percent of all civil servants tele-
worked on a regular basis in 2011.
Another potential growth area is
entrepreneurship. According to FLO, 144 family mem-
bers were running their own businesses in 2011. And
those who have taken the plunge say the experience has
been rewarding and professionally satisfying.
Consider Rebecca Grappo’s experience. When her
husband joined the Foreign Service 26 years ago, she
spent time working an embassy job as a community liaison
officer and an administrative assistant, then took time off
to raise a family before going into teaching.
Though the Family Liaison
Office and other institutions
can help, ultimately it
is still up to each EFM to
find his or her own way.