The Phone Contract Everyone Needs

Posted on: Jul 17, 2014

Categories: Leadership

Having a cell phone is a privilege, not a right. So prior to my 11-year-old and 13-year-old getting their first “dumb” phones activated, they had to agree to this contract:


My wife wrote this to teach them about cell phone usage and to protect them from the social, emotional, and physical dangers that can come from owning and using a personal phone. Now that the up and coming generations are practically born with an iPhone in their hand, it’s more important than ever to instruct them on how real relationships are built — with honest, face-to-face communication, not in cyberspace.

But this also got me wondering: How many of us should have an agreement similar to this with our employees?

Having spoken about customer service to thousands of individuals at a wide variety of companies, I realize how the cell phone epidemic has greatly changed the face of customer service.

Don’t believe in cell phone addiction? Check out this article by the Washington Post.

The worst thing I can see when I walk into a store is an employee on his or her cell phone. If that’s your store, then maybe you need to write a cell phone contract for your employees. Include if and when they have the privilege to use their cell phones, what they may be used for, how using it affects their customers, and explain that you can’t afford to pay them to stand there texting their friends. Have them sign it when they sign their agreement to work for you, and set up the expectations right from the start.

My children now know that having a cell phone is a privilege. Do your employees know that?

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