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Cellphone Etiquette

Learn how to practice proper cellphone etiquette from manners expert Faye de Muyshondt in this Howcast video.


Hi, I'm Faye Devoishantes with Social Skills, here to teach you when it is and it isn't okay to use your mobile device. We're all on our phones constantly. We are bombarded with information, we use it for every aspect of our lives, but there are certain parameters to follow in terms of when you should and shouldn't use your mobile device. So keep in mind who you're with, the situation that you're in. We're all multitasking, we're all doing a lot of things, but there are certain occasions where you shouldn't be on your mobile device.

So think about occasions, for example, when you're having dinner with someone, when you're face to face, when you have that opportunity to be with someone. It's really offensive to be across the table from someone and have them be on their mobile device the entire evening. Also, think about occasions like a funeral. You wouldn't want to be texting, you wouldn't want to be doing research on your smart phone while something so serious is happening. Think about the classroom. you wouldn't want to be texting or using your mobile device while your teacher is teaching an important lesson. Things that require your undivided attention should never, ever have a mobile device involved.

Just a few other situations to think about, when you're working, when you're in a meeting, it's entirely inappropriate to bring out your mobile device. It shows disrespect to bring out your mobile device in a meeting. In an office setting you want to be sure that you have your mobile device turned on silent or vibrate because it poses a distraction for everyone else in the office. Also you don't want to be constantly responding to text messages and calls during your workday. It's your workday, it's a time for you to be working, you're getting paid or you're perhaps interning for someone else. You want to make sure your time is devoted to that internship or to that job.

When you're at movie theaters and shows you should also keep in mind that there are people around you that are distracted by the light from your mobile device. If you do need to use your mobile device, step outside, step out of the theater, step out of wherever the show is happening, you don't want to be a distraction to other people. If you're at the office and you need to take something urgent be sure to step outside, step away from the office. Respect all of the people in your office and have the courtesy to take a personal call outside of the office environment.

You might be chatting with someone in person and fell your smartphone vibrating or hear a call coming in, but before you're so quick to answer it, or to respond to a text message, take a moment and enjoy that face to face interaction before you pick up your mobile device. If you really need to pick up a call make sure you excuse yourself before you do so. Those are just a few tips on when it is and when it isn't appropriate to use your mobile device.

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