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cell phone on the table

In a Meeting? Keep the Cell Phone OFF the Table

It Just Ain't "Right"

Want to get ahead? Keep your iPhone off the table.

Heading to a meeting? Going to a business lunch? Meeting someone in his or her office? Pocket the blackberry or cell phone, and turn off the ringer.

New technology leaves voids in etiquette and mobile technology is no exception. Just as people feel justifiably insulted when someone with whom they’re talking looks around the room to see who else is there, the PDA or cell phone placed on the table sends the same message.  It says, “what ever comes in on that device is more important than the meeting at hand.”

It is an etiquette blunder that can be career limiting.

Instead, make a commitment to focus totally on the situation at hand. This behavior will not only avoid negative impressions, but you’ll gain a better understanding of the issue at hand and will be able to provide more valuable input.

On rare occasions, if you are waiting for an urgent call or e-mail, inform your colleague, client, or meeting organizer in advance that you may have to excuse yourself for a moment to attend to an urgent matter. Or, When you need to type a message, excuse yourself and find a private place to do it, rather than sneaking it under the table.

Contrary to popular belief, people can’t do two things at once. By focusing on the meeting at hand, and giving your PDA a rest, you’ll be able to do one thing well. Focus on the meeting.

Hmmm. What a career strategy!