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Half of Britons say having children in the room is unacceptable in a virtual work meeting

A new YouGov study looking into behaviours Britons deem is or is not acceptable reveals Britons are most opposed to smoking or vaping in virtual meetings, with eight in ten (81%) believing that this is never acceptable.

It is also deemed unacceptable to have the radio or television playing in the background of a meeting, with a similar number (80%) saying this is never appropriate in a meeting. This is closely by seven in ten (72%) saying it is never acceptable to join a meeting in your dressing gown or pyjamas.

Workers are much more receptive to seeing pets on their screen during meetings than children – a third (33%) say it is acceptable to have pets in the room for any meeting type, compared to just 7% saying the same of children.
Around half (47%) say it is never acceptable to have children in the room, with a further four in ten (41%) having a slightly more relaxed approach, saying they can be in the room for informal meetings but not formal ones.
While few working parents think it is acceptable to have their children in the room for all meetings (7%), they are much more likely to say that a child’s presence is permissible for informal meetings: 52% of workers who use video meetings, and have children under the age of 5, say this is acceptable. Just a third (33%) say this is never appropriate, compared to half (47%) of all remote workers.

Just a quarter (25%) say it is ok to take a video meeting while sitting outside, while only a third (33%) think sitting on the sofa is appropriate seating for a meeting.

Taking a video meeting while in a public place is much more likely to be seen as a breach of etiquette. Around one in three workers who attend virtual meetings say that doing so from a train (33%) or a coffee shop or cafe (31%) is unacceptable for any meeting. Only 15-17% say it is always ok, while 44-49% say it can be acceptable for informal meetings.

Having your camera turned off is considered perfectly acceptable by half (48%) of workers who ever take video calls. A further quarter think it’s only ok to do so in informal meetings (27%), while one in six (18%) say that it’s never acceptable to stop your video feed.

Typing or working on something unrelated during the meeting is considered unacceptable to over four in ten (44%) of workers in all circumstances. Four in ten (39%) say it is only ok for informal meetings, while just one in eight (12%) say it’s acceptable for all meetings.