During a middle-of-the-night bathroom break, do you check the smartphone or not? What if a co-worker called with an emergency? What if the big deal went through? What if? We’ve all been there — in a restaurant with friends, on an airplane, in bed — the power of the smartphone gnawing away at us, the gut feeling that our boss has contacted us with an urgent request, or the wish to dash off an email to a colleague, even when we know he’s offline. We feel the need to be connected, at all times, to our Blackberries or iPhones, as helpful as they are, yet sometimes annoyingly stressful for the special breed of anxiety they present. Intrigued by our constant connectivity outside the workplace, Leslie A. Perlow, the Konosuke Matsushita Professor of Leadership at Harvard Business School, began studying the work and technological habits of employees at the global firm Boston Consulting...
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