Cell Phone Etiquette

This very curious email came to me through a contact at MyCFONetwork, asking for my thoughts …

In the past two days, I have been privy to listen to someone pitching a new business idea to a colleague and also someone chatting to their commercial insurance broker. 

And this

People that conduct business conversations on their cell phones while visiting the restroom … proper business etiquette? 

The age of “always connected” has made us lose all common sense, hasn’t it?  Things that we would otherwise have only talked about in the privacy of our homes or offices are now talked about and typed about very publicly. However, “business” still carries a modicum of confidentiality and as a finance or other executive, business etiquette should apply.

— Talking about a business deal at lunch with a colleague is typically done in hushed tones with heads leaning forward to create an environment of confidentiality. Deals done on cell phones are usually discussed at double volume for the entire restaurant to hear. Regardless of what public place you find yourself, my suggestion … let the call go through to voice mail and return it in a private setting. Or, if you think the call is that important, step outside or find an isolated, quiet place to converse. Have you considered what confidential information you might be revealing by talking so publicly?

— In the restroom. Seriously? I shouldn’t even have to comment but since I was asked, I will. Do you really need to have a business conversation while doing your personal business? How do you think it is perceived on the other end to hear the toilet flushing (or worse) or the water running or the hand dryer blowing? Do you want that image attached to your brand. My suggestion, let the call go through to voice mail and call them back from a quiet, private environment.

— And finally, please don’t ever call in sick, ask for a raise, or resign through texting.

What crazy things have you heard people discussing on their cell phones, where were they, and what were you're thoughts when you heard it?