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Cell Phone Etiquette

Written by admin, Thursday, January 6th, 2011 in Q&As

When I’m at a party or doing business, what’s the proper thing to do with my cell phone?

Two things: keep it off and keep it hidden.

As for parties (or any serious social situation), checking or visibly carrying around a cell phone is a massive faux pas. Doing so indicates you are distracted from your fellow partygoers, bored, ignorant, or some combination thereof. Unless there is some specific pressing reason for you to pull your cell phone out (emergencies, checking on fellow attendees, etc), keep the cell phone off and away in a pocket. If you must check your cell phone, do it discreetly and, whatever you do, don’t bother with it for longer than you absolutely must.

As for business situations, the rules are slightly more lax but not much more so. Because business is regularly conducted via telephone, and further because business is also regularly conducted by e-mail, checking your cell phone during normal business hours is slightly more acceptable, especially when you are among coworkers. Even given this lax rule, it should go without saying that during formal business meetings, be there people outside of your company or not, you should never use your phone unless absolutely necessary.

Long story short? Keep the cell phone muted and in your pocket as much as humanly possible. It’s a much more polite way to behave.

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