Tips for Successful Conference Calls
Conference calls have become an essential part of corporate business, thanks to the drastic growth of the telecommunication industry. We happily say goodbye to the time of traditional party lines and say hello to multiple parties being able to actively participate in virtual meetings. However, with any style of meeting, there are certain rules of etiquette or best practices to ensure a productive work session takes place.
Here are the things to strive for while attending conference calls:
Create and circulate an agenda.
For all the attendees of the meetings, providing an agenda gives structure to the meetings. This allows members to prepare in advance in order to effectively participate in the discussion. The rule of thumb is to always prepare for a conference call like an in-person meeting.
Start on time.
Waiting for those who are late will only irritate the members who were on time and delay the allotted amount of time to converse. Starting on a schedule will hopefully kindly remind the laggards that being prompt is essential to the discussion. The rule of thumb here is to always phone in early and make sure you are on time so you don’t miss the beginning introduction.
Familiarize yourself with each other.
A proper introduction is the key to any successful meeting, but especially when there is no face to face interaction. Everyone in attendance should introduce himself or herself by name, location, and role. Keep this in mind during the conversation, too.
Summarize and review actions.
At the end of the meeting, it is wise to summarize the findings and review each participant’s action items. This makes sure everyone is on the same page and accountable for their after-meeting duties.
Don’t be noisy.
Conference calls should be taken in a quiet and private setting. There are multiple sides to the call and that means background noise will be picked up and broadcasted to the entire group and cause unnecessary disruption to the conversation at hand. The rule of thumb here is to be polite; no eating or side conversations.
Don’t assume everyone recognizes your voice.
This goes hand in hand with familiarizing yourself with each other. If the conference call is a first time meeting, it’s especially important to say your name before you speak so the entire party can identify who is contributing at any point in time. It is also helpful for the group member responsible for meeting notes.
Don’t allow the conversation to wander.
This is where an agenda comes in handy. Follow and discuss the agenda first and then tackle other queries that may have popped up during the discussion. This prevents sidetracking and losing time in covering the most pertinent issues.
Conference calling has made the transfer of communication in a business setting easier than ever before. Take advantage and use these do’s and don’ts as a blueprint when attending or conducting your next call.
Posted in: Telecom Tips