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So, I’m Gen X, and therefore potentially grumpy and old. But Teams (or name your favorite tool, my company uses the M$ stack) calls aren’t something I’m necessarily prepared to take at a moment’s notice. Could you give me a heads up? Unlike a phone I can pick up, with PC-based communications I have to turn on a headset and make it connect before I can answer the call.

I sit in a cube farm and I prefer to keep my business away from teammates who are generally good at keeping their business from me.

Not knowing what is happening at the other end is the reason I hate making phone calls or any calls without first sending a text message to establish availability to chat, before I’ll broach availability for a voice or video call.

And then I have these requests. You know the camera on your laptop is shit. You also know that everyone is looking up your nostrils, or for you multi-monitor folks, the camera is pointed at your profile or your head is only visible in the bottom 25% of the frame.

We are in the 21st century. Pay attention to your camera quality. Pay attention to what your camera sees. Make sure we can see you with a little bit of light. And for the love of all that’s holy, put yourself into the majority of the frame and at least try to give the appearance you’re not doing other work on the call. Actually look at your camera from time to time.

Easy remedies that cost nothing:

In a purpose-built room?