Put Away Electronic Devices
Research suggests that the mere presence of a phone within a conversation significantly diminishes the quality of connection and the level of trust between people. The impacts of the device are even more pronounced when people were engaged in meaningful/deeper conversations as opposed to casual ones. What are some possible solutions?
- Enforce “smartphone free” meetings. To help people separate urgency from habit, make it a policy that a person who has a phone out must explain the reason for it.
- If you need to check your phone during an in-person meeting, inform the other person as to the reason why. This avoids any possible misinterpretation and also showcases the importance you place on the relationship and the attention you give it.
- Put your phone away when meeting people. My clients consistently tell me not only are they surprised about how differently they show up in a conversation, they also see profound shifts in how other people show up.
- Make sure you monitor the expressions of electronic incivility. Research has shown that disrespectful behaviors that occur through electronic communications exact the same toll as those delivered in person.