Smartphones During a Meeting

We are slaves to our technological devices. Checking our Twitters, Facebook, Snapchats, emails, reading the news, and maybe even researching why you have that abominable cough.

Where do we draw the line between professional and unprofessional smartphone usage? Is your company so inclined to being tech savvy that they would allow you to be lost to a screen?

Many employees are spotted getting on elevators, walking down hallways and attending meetings while on their devices! This is an occurrence that requires the attention of employers.

It has been found that Millennials are often the users and abusers of their phones during business meetings. Meanwhile, those over 40 would most likely put down their devices to focus their attention on their surroundings.

So, here’s what has to be done in order to get the full benefits out of your meetings sans smartphones:

Establish Rules

Before getting into the nitty-gritty parts of your meeting, ask everyone to please switch their phones to silent mode or shut them off completely. Explain that you require their undivided attention to be as productive as possible during the meeting. If you do spot someone in the crowd going against your request, then encourage them to step out of the room to address whatever situation requires their attention.

The Basket Method

Have a basket by the door with a sign that says “phone drop-off” alongside a pad of sticky notes and markers. This allows those entering a chance to switch their phones over to silent, writing their name on a sticky note and leaving the device in the basket. After the meeting, as everyone leaves, they may grab their devices out of the basket.

No Phone Zone

If you don’t want to part everyone from their phones using the basket method, try sticking a few signs around the conference room that say “No Phone Zone”. This way, the message is clear to those who enter. You could still establish your ground rules to reinforce the concept that phone usage is not condoned during the meeting.