If there is one rule of attention management that everyone can agree on (and that every organization desperately needs) it is The Golden Rule of Attention.

What’s The Golden Rule of Attention? Interrupt others as you’d like to be interrupted—which is never while you’re hard at work.

Though we all like to pop into co-worker’s offices for quick chats and exchange texts with loved ones while at work, doing so requires those we interrupt to take off their work hats to put on relationship hats. When we contact each other on a whim just because the impulse occurred it costs us time and confuses the mental “cues” we associate with our workspaces.

So let your comrades and loved ones be fully present at work, then ask them to be fully present at lunch, or at home.

Embrace The Golden Rule.