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One Sainsbury's customer tried it recently, and was shocked when the shop assistant refused to serve her until she'd hung up.
The supermarket apologised to the customer but should they have done? Etiquette of mobile phones: When should you hang up? [bbc.co.uk]
Would I have to cease speaking to my friend in order for the checkout operator to do their job? No.
Someone told me once to never take a phone call when talking to someone. The person in front of you should feel like the most important person in the world.
I heard when a Japanese businessman hands you their business card, if you don't focus on it and appear interested and reading it, it's an insult.actually I spent about 3-4 years+ dealing with Japanese corporations , our lawyer even bought a book 'How to deal with the Japanese'. In a meeting take their card, bow slightly. Next problem, who is who, lay their cards out opposite the person who gave them to you, it will be in English one side, Japanese the other. Watch out for surnames called Tanarka ( if I recall correctly ) it's like Smith in English ! They also respect honesty , even if it's not what they want to hear, so don't hold back, just be polite ( as you should be to the check-out person )