A phone communication ban?  What?!? How challenged would you feel if phone communication was banned for 24 hours?  No texting.  Zero calls.  Nada voice mails.  Social media via your smart phone = nope. Would you twitch?   Feel poorly accessorized?  Perhaps feel lost?  Maybe even naked?  I know this week’s tip is a real challenge for many.

The tip this week is PUT YOUR PHONE AWAY. Ban phone communication.

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It seems a bit radical suggesting a “phone communication ban” in an era of technology, but the reason I ask you to think about it is this — one common complaint I hear in the workplace is that technology, especially phones, are becoming a real distraction.  Especially in meetings. Once upon a time I heard someone say, “If you need to be on your phone, you’re too busy to be in a meeting.”

Now, I realize we are all busy and trying to get as much done as we can, so we try to sneak in some emails or text messages when we are in meetings.  And I realize many meetings are poorly run, so, we try to make the time spent in the meeting valuable since the value of the meeting itself is low.  Regardless, is using our phone when unnecessary the best and most professional way to be?  How is it helping or hurting our communication, not to mention, our productivity at work?

COMMUNICATION CHALLENGE: Ask yourself, “Do I absolutely need to be connected right now?”  “Do I need to have access to someone or something … or do they need to have access to me?”  If the answer is yes, then let the others in the room know why.  If the answer is no, then put your phone away.  Others will appreciate it.