Last week I was minding my own business on a machine in the gym when four young men came in. They decided to have a little competition lifting the various weights but although two of them engaged in a bit of chat, the other two only managed a little of the lifting before stepping out while they read and replied to messages on their phones.
They then moved on to the running machines across the room, exactly opposite to me. They decided on the time they were going to run, (presumably in competition with each other). Then three of them placed their phones in front of them and the fourth had his in his pocket. He ran with full concentration on the machine display but the others were constantly focusing on their phone screens, with one of them stepping off the machine twice to reply to texts.
At the end of the allotted time they all climbed off their machines and set off down the stairs, all reading their texts. What, I wondered had happened to the art of conversation?
It will not come as a surprise to many of you that we appear to have been raising a generation of young people who rarely talk to each other. This seems to be particularly true of the young men, as girls are more likely to share thoughts and emotions with their friends during social exchanges.
This is a difficult thing to solve isn’t it? There are so many screens, throwing out so much information, it is very hard to stop young, inquisitive minds from engaging with them. They have also been brought up to expect their social interactions to take place in this way and most of them know of no other way to manage their lives.
However, everything changes when you go into the world of work. Although some jobs require working with computers, many do not and this is where the difficulty lies.
In business, the ability to communicate orally with others, to share information or give instructions, is often vital. If we can’t find a solution to this 21st-century problem, we could soon be announcing the death of conversation and what a tragedy that would be.
Speak Loud & Clear!
Phone: 0800 083 4082