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Sorry Marissa, we can't all be caged in at work – Norah

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Norah Casey pictured for Sunday Independent.   Picture;  GERRY MOONEY.   1/2/13

Norah Casey pictured for Sunday Independent. Picture; GERRY MOONEY. 1/2/13

Norah Casey pictured for Sunday Independent. Picture; GERRY MOONEY. 1/2/13

ONE of Ireland's top businesswomen has dismissed the notion that all employees need to work in an office for improved productivity.

Publishing boss Norah Casey (51) said she doesn't agree with the assertion of Yahoo boss Marissa Mayer, who banned her employees from working at home.

The American CEO causing controversy has insisted that productivity would increase if all employees worked from the office.

Speaking to the Herald, the Newstalk Breakfast presenter said that while it suited some to work in an office, others needed their own space and freedom. "I don't agree with her," Norah said. "Personally I'm hardly ever in the office.

"And I can't imagine I would be terribly productive sitting in a chair all day plugged into a box. I need to be out and about."

The former Dragons' Den star says while some people suit being confined to an office, others need their own space and freedom.

 

Office

"It depends on what sort of work you're doing and the people you're working with," she explains.

"You can't get the best of people if you insist they're stay in the office like caged animals," she said.

"Some people who work in finance and are number crunching all day need to be out of the office, with the headphones on.

"If that works for them and they deliver everything on time – then I don't care where they're based," she said.

But Norah admitted being in an office environment is entirely appropriate for people involved in sales or teamwork.

"If you need a constant dialogue and banter then obviously it's best to be in the office," she explained. "But there is no one size fits all."

"I'm always on the go, but couldn't work from home as there are too many distractions. I'd be making cups of tea the whole time."

Former Google Inc executive Marissa took her new job at Yahoo when she was five months pregnant.

The businesswoman caused controversy when she returned to work just two weeks after giving birth.

She built a nursery in her office so she could bring her newborn baby to work. But Norah says it's unrealistic to expect young mums to do the same.

"I think it's wrong for individuals in powerful positions to set the bar for other women.

"Especially when it comes to maternity leave; everyone is different and not all mothers can afford to build their own private nursery in the office.

"I returned to work three months after Dara was born. And, for me, that was completely appropriate.

hnews@herald.ie


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