I spend a lot of time in meetings throughout the week and I am astonished at the number of people who bring their cell phones to these meetings anymore. I have never said anything about this before, but lately I have noticed over the last year that I seem to be the ONLY one who doesn't bring their cell phone into any given meeting.

Meetings take time and everybody's time is valuable. We are all busy, but are we so busy that we need have to have our phones right beside us in meeting? If you are expecting an important call, let that person know ahead of time that you will be in a meeting for a few minutes and to leave a message and you'll return their call as soon as the meeting ends...what's so hard about that?

The only thing more annoying than watching someone scroll through messages during meetings is a phone that has NOT been put on silent...are you kidding me? I don't know about you, but if I am the one talking, that is very distracting and inevitably I forget where I was, which is frustrating and completely avoidable...just put in on silent if you just have to have it in there with you. Vibrate by the way, can be just as annoying if the phone is sitting on the table.

The other thing that bothers me is when somebody is scrolling through messages while someone is talking and presenting information. I see that all the time and the one thing I can't stand to hear is, "don't worry, I'm Listening" when they get caught scrolling. "I heard every word you said." Sure you did. It's rude and disrespectful to the one speaking whether it's room full of people or a one on one, which is even worse!.

I was in a courtroom last week and when the judge entered and sat down, he very sternly warned all in the courtroom to turn off their phones. Not silent, not vibrate, but OFF and he was very emphatic about that. He also warned that if he heard a phone, there would be consequences. I wish there was judge in all of my meetings...that would stop it. Food for thought.