Modern Professionals

My coworkers’ home lives are constantly derailing our staff Zoom meetings – Anchorage Daily News

Q: Our department’s weekly Zoom meetings are a train wreck. One coworker’s kids pop their heads in front of the screen and wave “hello.” Another guy’s kids are on the other side of the table from where he sits, and they interrupt him when he’s talking to argue with him.

Yesterday, one woman started breastfeeding her baby. When her baby’s snuffling got to too much, I privately messaged her to turn off her audio. I did the same thing the week before when another guy dry-munched cereal.

She blew up and sent a chat to everyone. She said she had the right to breastfeed and had to feed the baby or the baby would have cried. Right away another coworker chimed in that if gentle noises bothered me so much, I could have shut off my audio. That woman reported me to human resources after the meeting.

I’m obligated to attend these meetings. Any advice would be appreciated.

Every train needs a conductor; yours appears to be asleep at the wheel. Zoom meetings go off the rails when those who attend forget that while they’re at home, they’re also at work. If your manager asks every attendee to observe eight guidelines, it might get your meetings back on
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