'Use a Virtual Background': Remote Worker Shopping as Boss 'Asks to Chat'

A work-from-home employee shared a video of herself shopping when her boss asks if they could chat in a video going viral on social media.

Published on TikTok, a woman under the username @theshatishow, shared herself shopping at Ross. In her cart, she had her work laptop in the cart when she received a notification from her supervisor. The popular video has over 290,000 likes and has been seen over 3.3 million times.

On the screen, the conversation started with: "Hey Shatiana, how is everything going?"

To which she responds with: "Everything is great, thanks for asking..."

Her supervisor asks, "Great, can we chat?"

With wide eyes, she runs out of the store in a panic.

Remote worker shopping TikTok
In a popular video going viral on TikTok, a remote employee shares video of her getting asked to chat with supervisor while she's shopping. undrey/iStock / Getty Images Plus

With over 4,000 comments, many other TikTok users share their thoughts.

"U better run to ikea and chill at one of their bedroom setups," one TikTok user joked. The comment received over 24,000 likes.

"I always say 'sure, I'll be free in about 30 minutes'. Remote work does not mean perpetual availability," another added.

"Go to Lowe's in the kitchen section with the cabinets and stove set up," said one user, "You Got This!!!"

A user wrote, "Not them interrupting your shopping."

"Take a picture of the room you work in. Set it as background," another advised.

"I would have sat in a chair at in the home goods department," one user said.

One added, "Girl just blur the background I've seen so many ppl on calls blurring it now."

"Get to a Starbucks pronto. 'Oh I just wanted a change of environment and a coffee to help me stay productive,'"

Some users even shared similar stories.

"I'm a supervisor and my manager will be in our meetings from her car, the store, another state. If they don't let it stop them then I won't either," one explained.

Another echoed, "I had a Tele-help call from a remote nurse, and I could hear her doing dishes while she gave me advice!"

"I have teams & one drive in my work cell- I be working & sending files while I'm waiting in the gas line at Costco," a user laughed.

Newsweek reached out to @theshatishow for comment.

Working from home has become more common since the start of the Coronavirus pandemic. However, two years later, many employees are returning to the office. According to a survey done by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 7.7 percent of people said they still work remotely as of April 2022. From previous data, 35 percent of people were working remotely in May 2020, the height of the pandemic.