Blackberrys, iPhones, and Treos have become a staple of the legal profession. They allow us to access all the information we may need at any given time. They also allow anyone to get in touch with us. Does this constant access hurt our reputations?
When in public, excessive use of your smartphone creates a bad impression on those you are around. If you are at a networking event or happy hour, but your thumbs stay glued to your smartphone, you are unlikely to make any lasting connections or draw any new business.
Even without sending any messages on the phone, constantly checking your phone sends its own message to everyone.
By checking your phone constantly, you are letting everyone know that whatever comes up on your phone is more important than the conversation you are having with them. Your smartphone use may hurt your reputation with the person you are communicating with, as well.
If you are out at a function or attempting to engage in other conversation, your written communication loses some of your focus. That means you are more apt to mis-speak in your e-mail, have typos or just generally come off worse than you normally would.
A few simple rules for yourself can stop these things from happening. The easiest and simplest is keeping your phone on silent and not checking it. However, they are not called Crackberries for no reason. If the function is particularly important, consider leaving your phone in the car. Another option is turning off the data connection but leaving the phone on for emergencies.
The Legal Ease Blog has more simple rules for keeping your smartphone from dumbing down your reputation.
BlackBerry Behavior: Is it hurting your reputation? | Legal Ease Blog