Joseph Harris, Chair of the firm’s Labor & Employment practice group, is featured in a SHRM article titled, “Is It OK to Drink Alcohol, Smoke or Eat During a Virtual Work Meeting?” by reporter Kathy Gurchiek, in which Joe explains that developing and distributing a remote-work policy is essential to address behavioral expectations. He notes that, legally, it does not matter if the employee’s behavior takes place in his or her home or at an employer-provided location, such as an office hoteling setup. “There is a common misconception among employees that, if they are working from home, workplace rules do not apply. This misconception can lead to problems in a number of areas, not just Zoom calls,” Joe stated.
Furthermore, employees “may not understand the privacy implications. And they may not realize that their behavior during a Zoom meeting is subject to the same standards as in the corporate boardroom. That is when problems arise. It is in employers’ own self-interest to proactively address these misconceptions before they lead to complaints that could create legal jeopardy for the company.”