BlackBerry or CrackBerry?

An exec’s guide to PDA use
By Elisabeth Vaillancourt
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 02/02/2006

Busy executives are always on the lookout for tools to help them work faster and smarter. When Research in Motion introduced the BlackBerry a few years ago, the personal digital assistant (PDA) was in the hands of only a few of the “technically hip.” Now, people everywhere are seen “thumbing” the day away. But does this slick new tool — sometimes referred to as the “CrackBerry” because of its addictiveness — really help the executive perform more effectively?

Phoebe Wright, president of Wright Methods Inc., recently held an executive roundtable session and asked just that. Using Peter Drucker’s eight practices for effective executives, participants analysed whether the BlackBerry helped or hindered their work habits. Overall, impressions were that it did both. The group concluded, however, that making their PDA work for them meant consciously adapting their work styles.

Here are the group’s top 10 tips to help executives maximize results and avoid pitfalls when using a PDA.