In response to increasingly toxic and useless meetings at my previous job, the tech staff was told that we were not allowed to bring our laptops to our regular meetings. This decision was initially met with a great deal of resistance and frustration, but ultimately it was a good one, as meetings got at least slightly more productive, and the folks (myself included) who were inclined to space out and/or do other work had to be more focused on the agenda and the needs of the rest of the “team”.
Since starting my new job, I’ve opted to continue leaving my laptop at my desk when I go to meetings. In part, this decision was made out of laziness, as undocking my machine is a royal pain, but on the whole, I think it’s been a good decision. I find that I pay much more attention when I can’t get distracted by the ‘nets – and I get really frustrated by the people who bring their laptops to every meeting and don’t contribute at all.
Speaking of which, time to go to another meeting!