Bringing a laptop to your meeting is second nature. After all, you'll need to make notes or research something the meeting leader is saying, right? On the other hand, your laptop could just be a huge distraction.
Photo by Nate Grigg
Writer Brad Dickason explains how leaving your laptop out of your meetings can actually be a huge benefit. The bright, alluring screens of our various devices demand our attention, which is a problem when everyone needs to be in the room and paying attention. Even if you're the only one without a laptop, you can make meetings go faster (and stand out to your bosses):
The people who are talking ONLY look at you. Everyone else has their laptop open, so the speaker's eyes are fixed on you because you're the only one looking at them and making eye contact. Maybe everyone else is subconsciously aware of what's being said, but it's really interesting to see everyone else staring at their screens while you and the person talking are actually communicating.
Meetings take less time. If one person is totally engaged, it quickly becomes clear that things are going off track and they can speak up and say "Hey guys, let's keep it moving."
If you make a habit of jotting down information, then you might replace the laptop with a paper notepad of some kind. However, if you know that you'll just be tempted to mess around on Facebook or pretend to be busy, leave the laptop in your office.