The majority of UK employees don’t consider the effect their use of mobile devices in the workplace has on colleagues, research reveals.
A survey of more than 5,000 workers, carried out by YouGov and commissioned by T-Mobile, reveals that 61% of respondents admitted to practising bad “mobile manners” such as leaving phones switched on and answering calls in meetings.
Such bad practice is negatively affecting workers, with 17% admitting they are left feeling disrespected or ignored when others practise poor mobile manners.
The majority (87%) of respondents admitted to being irritated when a mobile device rings in a meeting, with 91% feeling angry if the device is answered.
Four out of five office workers (80%) believe it is unacceptable to send or read a text message during a meeting.
However, a little more than one-third (38%) feel that using a laptop during a meeting is unacceptable.
According to the survey, workers want companies to take a role in quashing bad mobile manners, but 55% of respondents said their employer offers no guidance on the appropriate use of mobile devices in the workplace.
Phil Chapman, marketing director of T-Mobile UK, said: “It is important that individuals consider their mobile behaviour and that collectively we raise etiquette standards to ensure that mobile devices enhance our working lives without impinging on them.”
T-Mobile’s top 10 mobile etiquette tips
- Ensure your mobile phone is turned off or on silent mode during meetings
- Do not answer calls during meetings
- Do not send text messages during meetings
- Do not leave your mobile device on the table in vibrate mode
- If you are expecting an important call during a meeting, let the participants know at the beginning of the meeting. When you receive the call, discreetly excuse yourself from the room
- Ask yourself: “Do I really need my mobile device for the time period of this meeting or can I leave it behind?”
- Leave laptops closed during meetings. Only open laptops if resources are needed to support the meeting
- Don’t check e-mails on either BlackBerry devices or laptops during meetings. If necessary, turn on ‘out of office’ to alert those e-mailing you that you will be in a meeting and are unable to respond immediately
- Remember to take your phone with you if you leave your desk, or turn the phone off or onto silent mode
- Ask your employer or HR department to provide a policy on the appropriate use of mobile devices in your workplace.