Addiction to gadgets causes disruption in the office

Blackberrys, mobile phones, and laptops dished out by employers to help boost productivity may actually result in a disruptive workplace addiction.

Signs of a gadget addict include: sending text messages and accessing social networking sites in meetings, and continuing to take calls and listening to messages even after their boss has told them to put away their iPad or laptop.

Research conducted by software firm found that during face-to-face meetings, 41% of London-based office workers remained fixated on their gadgets. Of the 1,140 respondents, 31% admit to disrupting meetings to answer their phone, and 19% willingly defy their superiors and stay connected when they have been told to turn their gadget off.

The study also found that communication and social tools are encroaching on people’s personal life, with 85% of respondents keeping connected during weekends, 79% staying tuned in during evenings, and 74% keeping in touch with the office while on holiday. Almost half (48%) even stay online while in bed and 35% admit that they never disconnect from the office.

David Lavenda, vice president of product strategy at, said: “It would appear that we have a classic case of double standards in the workplace, with 82% complaining about other peoples’ tendencies to disrupt proceedings by answering a mobile phone, tweeting, sending an instant message, responding to emails or even just updating their social status, which incidentally 9% of our sample confessed they did.”

Read more articles on motivating staff through technology