Tech Protocol™ at Business Meetings

TableMtg2 JPEGTo Text or Not to Text! That is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous texting, or to take arms against a sea of distractions, and by opposing end them?  (with a nod to Shakespeare!)

Do you find texting and taking calls at business meal meetings distracting and disrespectful? How about just plain rude? Unfortunately, the practice has gained traction over time and thus has become a part of doing business. I recently attended a dinner meeting at which the “guest of honor” kept texting, checking her emails, and walking away from the dinner table to make or take a call. At one point, we were all asked to make our introductions—and yes, she did it again! The introductions were for her benefit; we all knew each other! However, she seemed oblivious to the gesture, and her lack of awareness came across as ungrateful to all of us. Plus, it made her appear self-serving.

How would you have handled this situation? In my opinion, meetings should begin with a tech protocol. For example:

“As a courtesy to everyone at this meeting,
please refrain from texting or answering cell phones until break time,
or until the meeting has adjourned.
Thank you.”

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