Boardroom briefing: working remotely, hacking, Amazon’s next move


Unlocking the secrets of successful remote work arrangements, hacking that businesses may be grateful for, and Amazon could be ready to say goodbye to small suppliers. Readings from around the world on business, leadership and management.

Trust them and let them work remotely

Teams can work remotely and still have a great synergy. Credit: PxHere

Though there has been a big increase in ‘working remotely’ in recent years, not all companies have embraced it.

In a recent blog post on, Dom Price, a ‘work futurist’ at software company Altassian, argues that banning remote work even on a full-time basis is misguided ‘because collaboration doesn’t require co-location. If it did, no company would ever expand beyond a single office site. But expand we do.’

So how do ‘distributed teams’ succeed? Companies first need to trust their employees and grant them sufficient autonomy. Then, at a practical level, Price suggests that, while some smart tech won’t go amiss: ‘It’s best to create relationships in person, then maintain them remotely … If you can get the entire team in one place once or twice a year to “break bread” together, so much the better.’

But my home internet has just dropped out again. How am I going to send this to my editor on time?

The teenager who hacked Apple’s computer system

The then 13-year-old boy hoped to get a job but instead got a $500 bond.

Here’s a novel way to apply for a job. A 13-year-old in Adelaide, Australia, decided to get the attention of global tech superpower Apple by hacking into its computer system and downloading documents.

Apple’s response wasn’t as he hoped. They called in the FBI, who notified the Australian Federal Police.

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The teen, now 17, ended up in front of a magistrate, who put him on a bond for good behaviour.

‘He didn’t know this was going to lead to anything other than a job at the end of it,’ said the teen’s lawyer, according to the ABC.

Apparently, some tech firms are so thankful that hackers expose their security weaknesses before the real criminals discover them that they often give them a job.

You’d think Apple might have been more appreciative, given their legendary attachment to security and privacy. In 2016, the FBI famously paid $900,000 to hack into an iPhone. Now, it’s a job for 13-year-olds.

The young hacker now plans to study cyber security and criminology at university. Someone should snap him up.

Amazon’s next move may affect small suppliers

Amazon is reportedly about to undertake a large scale purge of its smaller suppliers, a move that may affect Papua New Guinea exporters looking to sell online.

According to Bloomberg‘s Spencer Soper, in the next few months, bulk orders will dry up for thousands of mostly smaller suppliers. ‘Amazon’s aim is to cut costs and focus wholesale purchasing on major brands like Procter & Gamble, Sony and LEGO. The move will ensure the company has adequate supplies of must-have merchandise and help it compete with the likes of Walmart, Target and Best Buy.’

‘Two months ago, Inc. halted orders from thousands of suppliers with no explanation. Panic ensued—until the orders quietly resumed weeks later, with the company suggesting the pause was part of a campaign to weed out counterfeit products. Suppliers breathed a sigh of relief.’

If you missed last week’s Boardroom briefing, click here.

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