If you’re like most busy professionals, your smartphone has become an extra appendage and an extra part of your brain (to help settling bar room debates, mostly). Predictably, experts are throwing around the word “addiction” to describe how we feel about our iPhones, Androids and (apparently still) BlackBerrys.
But some companies are trying to break that habit and make their workers less dependent on modern communication means. A New York Times
article highlights some of these companies and what they’re doing to help their employees unplug.
For instance, Empower Public Relations in Chicago has a BlackBerry blackout policy.
CEO Sam Chapman “and his staff of about 20 turn off their BlackBerrys from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. on weekdays and completely on weekends for all work-related use, with rare exceptions,” according to the Times
. Chapman told the Times
that the policy has boosted productivity at the PR firm.
Despite the best efforts of companies such as Empower, the reliance on our phones has gotten so bad that 67 percent of mobile phone users have experienced “phantom rings,” in which you check your phone for a call or a text even when your phone didn’t ring or vibrate, according to a Pew Research study.