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Workers judge colleagues’ houses over video conferencing

Two in five (40%) UK employees judge their colleagues on how their house looks over video conferencing, a new poll commissioned by Eskenzi PR has found.

Encouragingly, of those who admit to judging their coworkers’ houses, 28% say they now view their coworkers more favourably, while just 12% say they now view their coworkers less favourably.

One quarter (25%) of the 1,000 people surveyed said looking professional on video conferencing calls has made them view their coworkers in a better light, and 25% of respondents also feel they know their colleagues better and therefore appreciate them more after video conferencing.

Women seem to be more indifferent to such factors than men, with 61% of women saying they don’t feel they know their colleagues better and they view them the same following the switch to video conferencing, compared with 50% of men.

More men also said they were likely to view their colleagues in a more positive light thanks to video conferencing because they felt they got to know them better (30% of males versus 20% of females).

Yvonne Eskenzi, founder and owner of Eskenzi PR, said: “In 2017, the BBC ran the headline ‘Children interrupt BBC News interview’, when political scientist Robert Kelly’s children erupted into the room where he was in a video conference in his home office.

“Today, such an event would be hardly newsworthy, as some 20 million Britons have shifted to remote work and have learnt how hard it is to keep pets off their keyboards and flatmates in pyjamas out of shot.

“It seems these relatable incidents have made people see a more human side of their colleagues. Our survey, however, also highlighted how important it still is to curate the details, even as we all work out of our living rooms and bedrooms.

“Ultimately, the secret is striking a balance between professional and approachable. And for those of us that don’t want the hassle, there are always Zoom backgrounds.”