Crucial Skills

A Blog by Crucial Learning

Crucial Conversations for Mastering Dialogue

Digital Divisiveness

VitalSmarts’ new research study shows that 89% of participants surveyed report damaged relationships as a result of the insensitive or inappropriate use of technology. And yet, most suffer silently.

According to the study of 2,025 people, 9 out of 10 report that at least once a week, their friends or family members stop paying attention to them in favor of something happening on their digital devices. And 1 in 4 say Electronic Displays of Insensitivity (EDIs) have caused a serious rift with a friend or family member.

So what do we do when confronted with such blatant EDIs? According to the research, most of us do nothing. Specifically, 1 in 3 people admit to coping with EDIs by simply ignoring them.

However, what happens when repeat offenders are your spouse, child, best friend, or coworker? Even with close relationships, people still struggle to speak up. In fact, nearly 2 out of 3 have no idea how to effectively reduce the impact of others’ inappropriate use of technology.

Those who say nothing give their silent approval of insensitive and bad behavior. So next time you’re face-to-face with an EDI offender, use your crucial conversations skills to restore civility without damaging common courtesy.

Here are five tips for getting started.

1. Take the high road. Some EDIs are urgent or necessary so assume the best intentions. Empathetically say: “That sounds important. I can come back later if you need to respond to that call or text.”

2. Spell it out. Specificity leads to results. Rather than making vague requests, set specific boundaries. Say: “We need your full attention in this meeting, so please turn off your cell phone.”

3. Illuminate the impact. Describe the consequences of an EDI rather than blast your judgments about another’s moral compass. Say: “Your screen light is disturbing my experience of the performance. Would you please turn it off? Thank you.”

4. Take heart. Don’t measure your influence by whether or not people immediately comply. Your intervention registers as disapproval and helps in the slow establishing of new norms.

5. Let it go. If you’ve employed every tactic and the offender fails to comply, let it go. Unless the situation will continue for an extended period of time or your safety is at risk, you’re better off just moving on.

View the results of our study in the infographic below or click here to download a copy.

EDI-Infographic-Big

Image for

What's Your Style Under Stress?

Discover your dialogue strengths and weaknesses with this short assessment.

Take Assessment

Image for

Subscribe Now

Subscribe to the newsletter and get our best insights and tips every Wednesday.

Subscribe

Image for

Ask a Question

From stubborn habits to difficult people to monumental changes, we can help.

Ask a Question

23 thoughts on “Digital Divisiveness”

  1. msLanei

    Thanks for the strategies and the reminder for my own behaviors.

  2. […] author of the New York Times bestseller Crucial Conversations, 87 percent of respondents say electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs)—or the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology—is worse today than it was just a year […]

  3. […] (EDIs) take a big toll on relationships, said David Maxfield, co-author of new research on Digital Divisiveness. “Maybe it’s time to change our behavior,” he […]

  4. […] (EDIs) take a big toll on relationships, said David Maxfield, co-author of new research on Digital Divisiveness. “Maybe it’s time to change our behavior,” he […]

  5. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was just a […]

  6. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was […]

  7. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was just a […]

  8. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was just a […]

  9. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was just a […]

  10. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was just a […]

  11. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was […]

  12. […] Joseph Grenny’s Digital Divisiveness, 87 percent of respondents reported that electronic displays of insensitivity (EDIs) — i.e., the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology — is worse today than it was just a […]

  13. […] of Insensitivity (also known as the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology).  In a recent study of 2,025 people, nine out of 10 reported that at least once a week, their friends or family members […]

  14. […] [via CrucialSkills.com] […]

  15. […] [via CrucialSkills.com] […]

  16. […] by inappropriate cell phone use, or Electronic Displays of Insensitivity (EDI). According to a survey by VitalSmarts, 89% of participants said that insensitive use of technology had negatively […]

  17. Angel

    When my friends, family and I go out to eat we pile our phones in the middle and the first one to grab their phone has to pay for half of everyone’s meal for disturbing our time together. lol

  18. […] relationships, mainly due to the frequency of people being on their phones in other’s company (Crucial Applications). I would argue, however, that it’s not the tool but how you use […]

  19. […] generally due to a magnitude of people being on their phones in other’s association (Crucial Applications). we would argue, however, that it’s not a apparatus though how we use […]

  20. […] primarily because of the frequency of individuals being on their telephones in different’s firm (Crucial Applications). I might argue, nevertheless, that it’s not the software however how you employ […]

  21. […] of the New York Times bestseller Crucial Conversations, a huge 87% of respondents say ‘electronic displays of insensitivity‘ known as EDI’s or the intrusive or inappropriate use of technology is much more […]

  22. […] Interaction Takes Precedence A survey from VitalSmart reported that 89 percent of people had damaged a relationship due to cell phone […]

  23. […] indicate 2 out of 3 people don’t know how to stop others from insensitive technology use. Here are eight ways leaders can unplug from digital […]

Leave a Reply

Get your copies
The ideas and insights expressed on Crucial Skills hail from five New York Times bestsellers.
Buy

Newsletter

Take advantage of our free, award-winning newsletter—delivered straight to your inbox