Want to make a good impression on the boss? Want to be the one who gets asked to do special projects, giving you the opportunity to “show your stuff?”
If you have ambition, then your boss will want to know. You can show your ambition by paying attention. And want to know the easiest way to show someone that you’re paying attention?
Forget your phone. Leave the device somewhere else. And then take those extra seconds to pay attention to the world around you. Why? Your phone is a distraction.
You say, “Nay, I’m not distracted at all!” It’s not me or even you that needs to be convinced, it’s your employer. Here’s a true confession from the employer’s perspective; if you’re on your device, you’re not paying attention to me. And if I’m not important to you, then I will return the favor.
Our company has a factory, light manufacturing is our classification, and our people used to have their cell phones out all the time. Music, games, texts, you name it. Everything was fine until mistakes started accumulating. Now, if they want those devices back, they have to earn the right by not making mistakes in production. They consider playing with their phones during work some kind of right, like being able to vote.
If I go in the back and need someone’s help, do I go to the person playing on their phone? Or do I go to the person whose attention is already drawn to me? I go to the attentive one every time. If you want to rise in an organization, pay attention.
If you’re in the position where you can be observed by your boss, or by those you serve, try to not spend too much time on your phone. If they are paying for your time, they may feel the need to ask for some of their money back. Maybe not today, maybe not during your raise negotiation, and maybe not when you need a favor. But someday.
That’s how you play the long game.