Bathroom breaks are the bane of working from home
Investment bankers are now working from home en masse. That can lead to occasional moments of embarrassment.
The other day I was on the phone with a senior banker who is now helping to execute deals from the comfort and chaos of his home. He was guiding me through the week’s volatility, the prospect of new issuance and the advice he is giving to issuers.
But mid-sentence, he was interrupted by an angelic voice requesting to go ‘pee pee’. I was quickly assured that it wasn’t one of his colleagues on the debt syndicate desk.
Another banker on a conference call recently heard an alarming sound. She was on one of those mass conference calls where no-one is quite sure who else is on the call, let alone why any of them have to bother. Most people put themselves on mute and only half-heartedly pay attention to what is being said.
One chap clearly forget to put himself on mute, since his colleagues heard the unmistakable sound of him going to the loo. Unfortunately, he needed more than a ‘pee pee’.
Perhaps worst of all was the experience of a friend in the US, who was greeted on a morning video call by the sight of a colleague’s husband, emerging from the bathroom fully naked. He wasn’t even wearing a face mask.
The lesson in this seems to be obvious: working from home is fine, as long as bathroom breaks aren’t involved. We have already seen a mad scramble for face masks, hand sanitizer and toilet rolls. I suggest banks now orchestrate a run on adult diapers.