Cell Phone Ruining Your Relationships?

Picture a romantic summer evening: The full moon. A gentle breeze. And then your cell phone goes off, the ultimate mood-killer.

In recognition of National Cell Phone Courtesy Month in July, the online networking app Skout, surveyed 5,000 of their users on appropriate etiquette and found that bad behavior on cell phones can really doom a relationship.

Two-thirds of those surveyed believe that your cell phone manners are indicative of your manners in general, and almost a quarter of the respondents wound up ending a romance because of their partners deplorable cell phone manners, including:

  • Checking messages during love-making
  • Using the phone while sharing a meal
  • Tagging people in photos without their permission
  • Being on the phone while talking with someone face-to-face
  • Having an annoying ring tone
  • Breaking up over the phone

I make it a point to keep my nose out of other people’s love lives, but building and maintaining a business relationship is very similar to tending to a budding romance. When you’re wooing a client, you not only need to impress them with your expertise, but you also want to sweep them off their feet by demonstrating how perceptive and responsive you are.

Even a little boorish behavior can throw a wrench in the works, like putting your phone on the table during a meeting over lunch or coffee. The subtle message is that if you’re keeping an eye your phone, you aren’t really focused on conversation with the person sitting across from you.

Cell phones have been around long enough that most of us know not to hold loud personal discussions on a crowded train, but it never hurts to review our habits periodically. Face-to-face networking is still the most powerful way to make an impression on a prospective client, so why blow the opportunity by messing with your phone? You can always return the call later.

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