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May 01, 2009

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Allison C. Shields, Legal Ease Consulting, Inc.

Josh:

Thanks for commenting.

I'm sorry that you think the post was technophobic. I'm all for technology, but I think that there is a time and place for it and it isn't always appropriate to be focused on technology when you're in the physical presence or company of others.

Technology is a fabulous way to stay connected, to be productive, and even to build relationships. But that same technology can also have a negative effect on relationships if personal connections and etiquette get lost.

I agree that we will probably see more blogging, microblogging, tweeting, etc. at conferences, meetings and presentations, and I'm all for it, where appropriate. (You may have noticed my posts about the ABA Techshow and my experiences "live-tweeting" some of the sessions). I just caution that you have to know your audience and be conscious of the image that you're projecting.

In a small meeting, particularly with clients, potential clients, colleagues or bosses who have different expectations than you do, engaging in microblogging, IM'ing and other similar activities may not only appear rude, but may hamper your ability to participate and get the most out of the event or meeting.

Allison

Allison Shields

Robert:

I wish I knew the answer. I think that the perceived need to be always instantly available is part of it, and I think sometimes ego is part of it - some people want to give the impression that they're busy, important or constantly 'in demand.' They may not realize that they may be projecting a negative, rather than a positive impression.

I also think that we've been (mistakenly) trained to believe that we can multi-task almost all of the time when in fact, there are few occasions when multi-tasking is actually effective. Regardless of how smart or talented we think we are, it's impossible for us to focus on a number of tasks that require the same part of our brain at once.

Allison

Robert Fligel

Enjoyed the post.

I have been tempted to do some of the things noted, but have restrained myself for all of the reasons mentioned.

A five second peek at the Blackberry... guilty as charged but not responding to emails and such.

I was at a meeting of CPAs in New York several months ago and a senior partner of a local firm was writing checks! The group leader was too polite (in my opinion) to say anything.

Why is this sort of behavior somewhat common? Is it the real or perceived need to be instantly available and responsive or are these personality trait issues?

Josh

Sorry, microblogging is the future and as my generation slowly takes over these conferences, you're going to see more and more of this.

Very technophobic article IMO, though I happen to agree with you that bluetooth headsets are distracting.

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