Maybe most of you will be disappointed to learn not even a global pandemic can get in the way of a meeting. As many of us find ourselves at working remotely, connecting between screens at a socially-acceptable distance, take a moment to read through some familiar faces and see if you can spot yourself. Honesty is always the best policy…
The one who’s too close for comfort
Physical distance might have been the original name of the Working From Home game, but some can’t help but get close…to the screen. Self-awareness is thrown to the wind as this colleague burrows their face inches away from their laptop in a greater effort to concentrate, not knowing the spinach from lunch is now stuck between their teeth, serving as a distraction for their whole team.
The one who leads a double life
There is some perverse joy to witnessing co-workers in their natural habitat: so that’s what you look like without mascara! For a neat freak, your books could do with some re-ordering…Having a window into someone’s home can at times become an invitation for distraction a la spinach teeth, but some discoveries can be downright scandalous. For instance, what’s that pile of toilet paper stacked in the corner there?
The one who remains invisible
This group could have once belonged to the former group or lives in fear of having said double life revealed. This co-worker hits the ‘no video’ option faster than you can say WIP, leaving the rest of the team to communicate with a small, black rectangle. This person unfortunately dampens team spirit and novelty of Working From Home for all, as everyone struggles to trace their input back to the faceless box.
The one with tech difficulties
There is always one for every meeting. If there were a conference call bingo, each iconic phrase would belong to this co-worker. From joining late or cutting out to being the culprit of a loud, painful echo, all can be easily forgiven. As long as this person doesn’t push for a ‘hard stop’ or leaves to jump on another call…
The one who is easily distracted
The Working From Home model for an entire team is a novelty for most, although it might betray some colleagues by revealing they have the attention span of a Goldfish. In conditions like these, a Zoom screen will be a window into your soul…or just how focussed you really are. So, don’t whimsically stare out your window, pick your split ends or read your emails – Big Brother is watching!
The one who holds us together
Last but not at all the least, the co-worker who makes everyone feel like Working From Home is the most natural arrangement in the world. Like an anchor in a heavy storm, this colleague is on time and on board for every meeting and has the remedy for every tech hiccup we could possibly experience at home. This co-worker also tries to bring some fun with themed-meetings, like BYO rosé. Thanks for bringing both order and laughter in equal measure.
No matter what remote working situation you find yourself in, there is much to gain from even this unique situation. Technology is showing just how resilient our team really is, from creative ways to ramp up productivity to showing how we can show up for each other outside of the four walls of an office. These times are proving that people are always a business’ best asset, Zoom warts and all.