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San Francisco businesses go 'topless' at meetings

By Chris V. Thangham     Apr 1, 2008 in Business
Companies are getting tired of individuals who bring laptops and mobile phones to meetings because they cause distractions. Some companies are now creating a “topless” or “no laptop rule” in meetings.
Most meeting participants get distracted if a colleague is pecking away at a laptop, or in the case that a cellphone rings. If the person answers the phone, it's even worse. As a result, companies have started to impose a “topless” rule at meetings.
Adaptive Path, a San Francisco design firm, is one of the many companies going with the “topless” rule. Todd Wilken from the firm told United Press International:
Laptops, Blackberries, Sidekicks, iPhones and the like keep people from being fully present. Aside from just being rude, partial attention generally leads to partial results,"
Wilken said his company's employees have been more productive since adopting this rule.
However, as UPI reports, some believe meetings in general are not productive and should be axed.
Joe Lazarus, former director of marketing for said “no laptop” meetings make sense but “no meetings” makes even more sense. In my opinion, this is crazy; It's no wonder he is a former director of Yahoo.
Meetings usually last less than an hour (depending on the nature of the conversation) and I think attendees can be civil and follow a no laptop rule easily.
Does your company have the same problem at meetings?
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