Fresh thinking technology firms are finding that use of wired gadgets is bringing down workplace communication levels.
The Los Angeles Times reports that companies are mandating ‘topless’ (as in no laptop) meetings so that employees can focus in on old time skills of listening and collaborating.
Most would expect Silicon Valley to be the last place on Earth where offices unplug from PDAs, Blackberries and Notebooks. But that is exactly the case in this instance.
Business meetings at these tech firms were becoming futile as programmers tapped away on their laptops and marketers answered mobile phones. Attendants were so obsessed with staying connected, that attention to speakers was at best partial.
The article also reports that Professors at UCLA were cutting internet access in lectures because students were simply ignoring the teaching in favour of sports scores and stock quotes.
Sue Fox, author of ‘Business Etiquette for Dummies’, posed to the LA Times:
“What’s more important — the gadget or the person, or people, you’re with?”
John Vars, co-founder of Dogster Inc, told the daily that all the gadget distractions were building up resentment at the workplace and hampering teamwork.