We're going to be talking about the rise of social media and the impact it's having on the business world.
Jackie: For this week's podcastsinenglish.com business podcast, we're going to be talking about the rise of social media and the impact it's having on the business world. With me is Kevin. Hi, Kevin.
Kevin: Hi, Jackie.
Jackie: And you're a boss. Is this a problem for you?
Kevin: Well, I think recently um... it's become more of a trend in the workplace, where with Twitter and Facebook and different forms of social media and more and more people being able to access it, we're finding that people are spending an awful lot of time um... apparently distracted or using those social media websites during working hours.
Jackie: Can you give some examples about how work is being affected?
Kevin: Well, an obvious one is meetings. A few years ago in meetings it was very easy to hold people's attention for everyone to participate and be involved but um... more and more what we're seeing is one or two people sitting in meetings who are looking at their iPhones or their, you know, their... their laptops or... or whatever they have with them in the meeting and er... typing and you know, apparently er... not listening or... or being part of the meeting so... and that is a problem, that is definitely a concern that that's happening more and more.
Jackie: How do you deal with that?
Kevin: With difficulty.
Kevin: I think the first thing is to have some er... standards and policies that you ask people to comply with. The first one is to try and discourage that happening.
Jackie: I mean they obviously think that it's fine to do that. They're not embarrassed that they're doing it?
Kevin: I think it's something that's now part of everyday life for most people and I think making the distinction between doing it in their own time and continuing to do it in work time er... is a boundary that people are trying to er... resolve. Particularly... particularly employers who are finding that it is becoming quite rapidly a... a challenge in the workplace.
Jackie: Yes, and it's not just people using their mobiles inappropriately, it's um... accessing personal stuff on the... on the computers as well, Facebook etc.
Kevin: We don't try and stop people doing it but we do ask them to do it in their own time, during their lunch break or perhaps when they're having a coffee or a tea um... but we are finding that, increasingly, people are doing it for longer periods of time during working hours.
Jackie: So they've got their Facebook page open while they're doing other things as well, work related things.
Kevin: Yes, they have. I think because it's part of their everyday life now, they do find it very difficult to make that distinction between what they can do at work and what they should leave for another time and I think there's a whole generation who are finding it difficult to adjust to that.
Jackie: Well, it's very much a 21st century business problem, isn't it? You the listeners who are bosses do you have problems like this in your workplace? If you do, write in and tell us, we'd love to hear from you. Thank you, Kevin, very interesting.
Kevin: A pleasure.