Friday, May 29, 2020

Having video on a work call should not be mandatory

I have a love-hate relationship with my manager. Ever since we have all been working from home, he has been on my case to have my laptop's video camera on when we have meetings.

First, my Internet connection was horribly slow for the last two months. It wasn't until I called my Internet Service Provider and got a new modem that I have seen a huge improvement with my connection.

Second, I don't care much for having video on. A colleague thought that I was shy. I'm not. I choose not to. I am comfortable that way. Always have been. Always will be.

This conversation has surfaced from my manager at least four times. Every time, I have made it clear that I prefer not to have video on. I hate that I have to go through it every time and that he has poor listening skills.

His manager insists that his team have video on. If she were my manager, I would say the same thing. It is not mandatory to have video on all calls. It is a choice. My manager said in a sentence that we "have to." I shot that down immediately.

I have a feeling that he misses seeing me, but can't express it. Well, the more you pressure me to turn my video camera on, the more I will resist. It should not be a forced option.

I feel like he has no respect for me. Is he that slow or thick that he doesn't get it?

It has been a long week. I want the weekend to start now.


  1. Does he ever give a reason? Also, can you see him? What about others on the call?

    There are a lot of non-verbal cues in body language. One of the reasons people want to meet in person is because communication is more effective and sometimes quicker when people are visually present.

    But for many purposes the video aspect isn't all that important. So, I'm interested in what he says are his reasons for this.

    1. I agree that you get to see the body language associated with the verbal message being conveyed. However, it should be a choice. I sometimes have five meetings in a day. I find it taxing to always be on video. It should not be mandatory.

      He has cited non-verbal cues once. Most of the time, his reason is, "My manager does it." To me, that reason doesn't cut it.

      My manager is someone who says that things should be done one way, but he does not lead by example. When we weren't self-isolating, he told our team that we must be at work between specific business hours. He decided to come into work at 1 pm to avoid rush hour traffic, which isn't a good reason. We all endure commuting first thing in the morning, unless we have early morning meetings. He is allegedly an exception every workday.

  2. i'm in agreement with you. i don't think video should be mandatory - it's a personal choice imo.

    1. Exactly! It shouldn't be imposed to have your video camera on just because someone is in the mood to see your face. It's definitely a personal choice based on comfort level and shouldn't be forced.