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When is it necessary to turn on your video on in a Zoom meeting?

More than a year after many of us started working remotely, we’re still asking the same question, often several times a day: During a meeting, should I turn my camera on or can I keep it off?

In the second episode of Fast Company’s new podcast Hit the Ground Running, my cohost Christina Royster and I tried doing the latter, keeping our cameras off for all meetings for one week. The results were mixed, but I failed right out of the gate.

It turns out that whether or not you have your camera on or off can have serious consequences when it comes to our colleagues’ perceptions of us. To learn more, we talked to Dr. Courtney McCluney, an assistant professor of organizational behavior at Cornell’s Industrial and Labor Relations school whose work focuses on marginalization in the workplace.

Dr. McCluney says that remote work can disproportionately hinder employees of color. “[Remote work has] hindered people of color, especially if we think about the type of organizations that are likely to have remote work at this time, it’s one where people of color are underrepresented. Less than 20% of remote workers identify as Black in this country,” she says.

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