Engaged or just connected? Smartphones and employee engagement by Judith MacCormick, Kristine Dery, Darl Kolb
As our society becomes more technologically advanced, people become more and more engaged through its products. In this article, the author speaks about how smartphones are becoming an essential communication tool for people to connect to their coworkers, bosses and overall work environment. It is predicted that by 2014, there will be more mobile users than Internet users. The people are quickly transitioning their lifestyle to use a more convenient phone that allows them to engage with their work while running their own personal errands such as taking care of their children. “Statistics indicate that 48 percent of users apply their smartphones to aid in their work.” Although this may make lives easier, the author questions its effectiveness. Are smartphones positively influencing employees and their work progress or slowing them down? This is the problem that the authors study within this article.
The authors conducted an experiment with two global investment banks and how engaged their employees were with using the Blackberry smartphone. They chose investment banking because it was “proved to be an ideal setting to explore engagement and patterns of smartphone use. They interviewed senior managers and employees throughout both banks and came to the conclusion that there were three types of smartphone users: hypo connectors, dynamic connectors, and hyper connectors. There are also three types of behaviors that they separated employees into, which are under-engaged, functionally engaged, and over-engaged. Hypo-connectors are smartphone users who are under-engaged in their mobile connectivity, hyper-connectors are smartphone users who are over-engaged in their mobile connectivity, and dynamic connectors are functionally engaged. According to studies, under-engaged and over engaged behaviors are bad for individual smartphone users and employees in...
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