Monthly Archives: February 2013

Yahoo! or Yahoo? Have they totally lost the plot regarding remote working?

Yahoo has announced it is taking measures to ban its staff from “remote” working. After years of predicting working from home as the future for everybody, why has this high tech company taken this step? “Speed and quality are often sacrificed when we work from home.” says the memo from the Yahoo! HR department. Virgin entrepreneur Richard Branson, who spends much of his time working on Necker Island in the Caribbean, was quick to respond calling it a “backwards step in an age when remote working is easier and more effective than ever”. I like to think of us at *UP as pioneers of remote working with over 130 people working remotely around the world – so we know a thing or two about it. I used to spend up to three hours a day in my car driving to and from work. I’d sit in an office with a large number of other people who had all done pretty much the same commute. It dawned on me that there had to be a better and more productive way of working in this new digital age. I’m truly baffled by Yahoo’s! announcement – I think they’ve lost their way. Maybe they should change their logotype to Yahoo? It seems a very odd move, for a supposedly high tech company’. What makes *UP so different? You won’t find any fancy offices or executive creative directors. *UP works with distributed project teams, assembling senior level ‘doers’ to meet each client’s needs after a careful input and evaluation session. Team members may be located in the client’s home city, or halfway around the world. One of the keys might be that the majority of *UP people have worked together in the past either at agencies or as clients. We’re extremely selective and careful in who we allow to join and having a past shared experience better enables us to work successfully without sitting in the same physical room. *UP There, Everywhere is already working with a number of clients in the US, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, USA, UK and Switzerland. Global Connected Co-operative Communities

Stubbs in the cloud

We believe that Connected Co-operative Communities working through the cloud will make major changes to the working patterns of people around the world. *UP There, Everywhere is one of the very first of these to be put together in such an organised and truly international fashion. Our mission is to help change the way the world works. It’s a big mission, but we believe one that is now possible with the tools we have available. And if that new way could address CO2 emissions and its effect on climate change, then all the better. *UP There, Everywhere has emerged as part of that totally new way of working. The dream of teams of people working remotely has been around a while, but only now, with today’s technology and applications, is that dream becoming a reality. The focus at *UP is on delivering creative and brand services that helps clients, especially those in “high involvement” or ”considered purchase” areas, to develop brand strategies, identities and communications that reflect today’s global market, digital communications and cross-cultural thinking. At *UP we form client teams based on needs, location, language, market experience and other factors. *UP members use online technology, including project management tools through sites such as Base Camp, Drop Box, Skype, iChat and Facebook groups. Without the overhead of offices and formal employees, *UP has developed a completely new business model, while offering a highly experienced, diverse team of experts with international work experience. About *UP *UP is working with a number of international clients, such as The Nobel Peace Prize Concert, the branding assignment for the city of Oslo, Dako Cancer Diagnostics and Science magazine in Washington DC among many others. In its first full financial year the company passed a million euros in sales and is growing strongly.

The Fabulous Faroe Islands

It’s not often these days we get a chance to really get off the beaten track. Well I’m lucky enough to be doing just that. I’m visiting the Faroe Islands, having been asked to give some thoughts on how this group of 18 islands could market themselves more effectively. First question a number of my friends ask is ‘where are the Faroe Islands exactly?’ Some even mistakenly think its somwhere down by the Falkland Islands. Well no, there is no imminent threat of invasion by Argentina – not unless the Argentine army gets particularly badly lost. The Faroes are actually located midway between Norway, Iceland and the tip of Scotland, in the middle of the Atlantic. Indeed it’s the rugged location that has made this place what it is. Flying into the small but modern Vagur Airport you’re treated to a close up view of fjords, mountains and small remote coastal villages. It’s thrilling. And nothing pepares you for the freshness that hits you the moment you step from the plane. You realise you are really in the mid atlantic. One of the charms of the Faroe Islands is the down to earth nature of the place. My hire car was rented through a smaller local company and after having made payment online (actually via paypal) I was sent a mail telling me my car would be in the short term car park, keys in the glove box and good luck! As I said charming. The drive to Torshaven is dramatic, full of mountain passes and deep subsea tunnels. The engineering alone is impressive. The scenary on the drive is ever changing as is the weather and the light. Thankfully the roads are good and within an hour I arrive at the best hotel on the islands, the Hotel Føroyar, which also happens to have the best restaurant on the Faroes as well- Koks. On my second night I’m treated to a truly stunning eight course meal (four starters, two main courses and two desserts) and each course is accompanied by carefully chosen wines and even a beer. If you visit the Faroe Islands, you don’t need to eat poorly. Art, culture and music is a big topic in the islands. Check out the G Festival, which is held every July and billed as the most unique music festival on earth. If you get a chance take some time and listen to the music of Eivør Pálsdóttir and Gudrid Hansdottir. Enchanting. So how would I sum the Faroes up? Well firstly it’s a lot closer than you think. It’s just a two hour flight from Copenhagen airport, with the local airline Atlantic Airways. In terms of what the Faroe Islands offer, it’s a place that goes beyond the imagination and senses. It’s special. Worth a visit? Absolutely.