This will be a short post today because the topic is very simple: silence your cell phone when you’re in a meeting. Especially if you’re running it.
Every mistake is a learning opportunity. Or, if you make the mistake while you’re teaching people how to be good presenters, a teachable moment. In May I was conducting a Cheating Death by PowerPoint session. During this training, I teach people how to use PowerPoint better and how to present well. Right in the middle of the session, my phone rang.
I have to tell you, I’ve only given out my cell number to family members and close friends. Because the cell service where I live is so spotty, it’s more reliable for people to reach me using my land line. And I really don’t like trying to have decent conversations on a cell phone: “What? What?!? Betty, you’re breaking up, what did you say? Are you there? HELLO?!?” Etc., etc., etc. I do keep the phone with me all the time, though, and the ringer is usually on silent. But not this time. A good friend of mine was trying to reach me during the session.
What made it more embarrassing/funnier is that my ringtone is super obnoxious. Here it is:
Pretty frickin’ hilarious, right? Actually, the class thought it was funny, and I turned it into a joke about remembering to turn off your ringers when you’re in a meeting.
I hope that you will learn from my fail and always remember to silence your phone while in a meeting. Because the session you disrupt might be your own.