This may be one of those “duh” moments, but not everyone knows how to conduct themselves regarding using their cell phones while at work. Many companies do have cell phone policies. However, if the rules aren’t spelled out, what are the right and wrong ways to use a phone on the job?  Is it ever appropriate to have your cell phone at work and access it during work hours? Put simply, yes and no. While it is easy to create policies restricting cell phones, there will always be situations where they are necessary. Here are four ways to exhibit good cell phone manners in the workplace.

  • Turn off Your Ringer.
    Especially in a medical facility or hospital, having a phone ring while with a patient or with a manager can be distracting and embarrassing. If you have your phone with you, turn the ringer off. It can be set to vibrate so you still know if a call has come in or simply check your phone periodically to see if a text or voice mail message has been received.
  • Important Calls Only.
    It may be helpful to assign importance to incoming and outgoing phone calls. Your mother or children may be top priority. If you are expecting a phone call from a doctor’s office or other important business, you may answer those calls. Other calls may not require a high degree of importance. Talk to family and friends about contacting you during work hours only if it is an emergency.
  • Find a Private Place to Make Calls.
    If you do need to make an important phone call, try to find a quiet and private place to do so. This will be much less distracting to your coworkers or patients than if you are speaking on the phone where everyone else is trying to do their jobs. Be courteous to those around you and find a place to take or make a call that won’t be disruptive.
  • Don’t Bring Your Phone to Meetings.
    Staff meetings should be treated with extreme importance and taking a phone into the meeting shows disrespect to the manager and coworkers. A meeting will never last long enough to interrupt an important message so leave your cell phone elsewhere during these times.

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