Canadian Consulting Engineer

Hey gadget addicts – are you listening?

"Over the past few years, [David] Starkey has noticed a change in the way people approach meetings, and it has convinced him that the structure and formality that used to make meetings efficient is long gone. The meetings are frustrating, but...

November 1, 2011   Canadian Consulting Engineer

“Over the past few years, [David] Starkey has noticed a change in the way people approach meetings, and it has convinced him that the structure and formality that used to make meetings efficient is long gone. The meetings are frustrating, but the gadgets are making them worse. ‘I remember meetings years ago where you listened to what people had to say, you respected it, and you took notes. Now, it’s hey, ping my Blackberry is going off, and people are having online chat discussions,’ he says. ‘People need to learn to shut off their tools.’ This phenonemon was dubbed ‘continuous partial attention’ by Linda Stone, a Seattle-based writer and speaker. ‘The motivation is “I don’t want to miss anything because being connected makes me feel important,”’ she once said.”

— extract from “Distracted,” by Jacqueline Nelson, Maclean’s, September 12, 2011.


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