One of the notable technology trends in the last year has been the proliferation of smart phones and tablets, replacing laptops and desktops as the “bring your own device” (BYOD) of choice. A BYOD world adds to the immediacy of email, tweets, and the variety of social media posts. With mobile devices as, if not more, powerful than traditional computers, our e-enabled lifestyle allows us the flexibility to be productive, communicative and collaborative as we choose.
The challenge is that this ever-present immediacy threatens to completely eliminate the expectation that we are ever “off-line” and unavailable. I’ve noted a significant increase in business-related correspondence signed “sent from my iPad” arriving at all hours and (too) often on weekends. I’m not sure this is really productive, or just another sign that the expectation of a challenged economy is causing us to think we need to work harder and expect the same from everyone we communicate and collaborate with.
Regardless of the motivation, the reality is our communication and productivity tools are smaller, lighter, easily connected to the net and the web, allowing us both the freedom and the chains of “always on.” Learning and applying balance and priority will become more important than ever.
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