A year in moments #8 – the naked conference call

With all the remote working right now, this seems an opportune time to recall a story relating to working from home.

I was working for Jaguar Land Rover; a global company with a great reputation. I worked in the HR department at Whitley and our office was set up for remote working; mainly in that there wasn’t space for everyone to work in the office at the same time. So we were expected to work from home. Forward thinking, and very flexible.

We had a team meeting once a week. Can’t remember the day, perhaps a Monday. Not many of us went into the office on a Monday. I mean, why would you. Urgh Monday. Anyway. It was a morning, perhaps 9am. It was first thing, as I was still in bed as I fired up my laptop. I was training for an ultramarathon at the time and any mornings where I wasn’t out running I was maximising my sleep time.

I had the laptop open, the duvet pulled up. Usual stuff, we’d all done meetings from bed. It was a couple of minutes before the meeting was due to start and I had a thought. I could really do with a glass of water.

I got up, and on the way out clicked the ‘connect’ button, leaving the laptop on the bed as I went to the kitchen. That way I’d come back and be in the meeting; no point in delaying by a few minutes.

I filled my glass, and had it in my hand as I walked back into the bedroom, immediately realising my mistake. There, on my laptop on the the bed, was a full frontal image of myself, completely starkers. I’d slept naked, and totally forgotten I didn’t have any clothes on at the same time I’d joined a video call.

I literally dropped to the floor like a sack of potatoes, glass still in hand. I was pretty impressed I didn’t spill any water but this wasn’t the time for celebrating small achievements. My heart beating out my chest, I peeked over the edge of the bed and clicked ‘stop video’. Breathing out slowly, I checked who else had been on the call. Who did I need to apologise to for that unexpected sight on a Monday morning? I mean, I was friends with all my team but this was going a little too far.

I couldn’t believe it. For once, every single person was late joining the call. Thank god for that.

I’ve never joined a work call naked again.

Definitely too risky.

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