Roy: Put Down the Electronic Devices and Have a Conversation

Air Force leaders need to do a better job of balancing technological advances and human interaction, said CMSAF James Roy. While digital tablets, social networks, and cell phones can be invaluable, it’s important not to lose the value of plain-old face-to-face conversations, he wrote in a July 17 Chief’s Perspective. “Real human interaction—yes, for some of us it may be awkward at first, but getting to know each other better is an investment that will yield incalculable returns,” wrote Roy. “Stronger connections will create a foundation on which we can grow more meaningful relationships.” That’s not to say that technology can’t, and shouldn’t, augment those relationships. “As airmen, we have to understand how to use technology, because without it we are not as well-equipped to do our jobs,” he stated. However, he continued, “as human beings, we also have to understand how and when not to use technology, because when distracted by it, we are not as well-equipped to relate to others.”