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Allowing employees to work from home permanently hasn’t always been embraced by companies in the past.But times (and technology) have changed.For a long time, working from home was discouraged at Zillow, according to the real estate company’s Chief People Officer Dan Spaulding.”We have a lot of people, particularly in leadership, that were really wedded to the way we all grew up in the workplace, which was, you came to work five days a week and you started your meetings at 9:00 and tried to end your meetings at 5:00,” he recently told me. Read MoreThat can be a hard habit to break. “I will be honest, there was a lot of tension between leadership and our employees about the ability to be a more flexible employer,” said Spaulding.Zillow workers will now have more choices when it comes to where they work. The company expects some to work from home permanently, while others may come into the office a few times a month or a couple days a week. Read more from my interview with Spaulding about the company’s decision to reverse course.The great gig worker debateThere could be some big changes coming to Uber and Lyft’s business models.Earlier this week, a judge in California ordered the ridesharing companies to reclassify their workers as employees in the state — and soon. Currently, drivers at the companies are treated as independent contractors. That means they don’t get protections that employees are entitled to — like minimum wage, overtime, paid sick leave, and unemployment insurance, reports CNN Business’ Sara Ashley O’Brien.In response to the order, a Lyft spokesperson said in a statement: “drivers do not want to be employees, full stop.” The company said it will appeal the decision.Both Uber and Lyft have threatened to suspend operations if the current order holds.Read more about what the ruling means for the two companies and other gig economy businesses here.No more excuses The heartfelt messages, statements of solidarity, listening sessions and pledges to provide racism-free work environments aren’t enough.It’s time for businesses to create a strategic action plan.That’s the message 29 diversity executives expressed for CNN Business’ Perspectives.Companies should also measure outcomes with incentives and/or consequences that hold leaders accountable, the group writes.To help establish a more inclusive environment, the group recommended seven actions, including scrutinizing company policies and practices and making a real financial investment in inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility departments.Read more about what businesses need to do here.Signs of hope at the topCorporate America’s diversity problem starts at the top.Growth in the number of minority directors on US corporate boards is barely inching along.But that could soon change.TheBoardlist, a search platform of highly recommended executive women seeking to join corporate boards, has seen a sharp increase in requests for minority women candidates, reports CNN Business’ Jeanne Sahadi.”Ninety percent of the conversations we’ve had with boards in the past three months has been about looking for women of color and ideally, Black women candidates,” said theBoardlist CEO Shannon Gordon.Legislation has been proposed in California that would require public companies headquartered in the state to have at least one board member from an underrepresented community by the end of 2021.Read more about how companies can create racially diverse boards here.Coffee breakHalloween is just around the corner.Well, at least it might seem that way given all the candy displays popping up in stores already.With the pandemic threatening to change how the holiday plays out this year, some candy manufacturers are hedging their bets for what is typically their biggest season, reports CNN Business’ Alicia Wallace. What does that mean? Fewer candies in Halloween-specific packaging, focusing more on big-name brands in family-sized packs and extending the shopping season in some cases. This is bad news for those of us eating our weight in chocolate these days (raises hand).

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https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/13/success/zillow-change-work-from-home-work-transformed/index.html

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