Conference calling has endured some major pitfalls that have prompted some comedic videos such as this one from Tripp and Tyler. Today we would like to share five ways you can avoid some of the pitfalls of conference calls.
- Manage expectations. The leader of the call needs to provide structure and a flow to the conversation. The host of the meeting will need to facilitate and keep everyone on track.
- Set a clear agenda. It’s is best to verbalize the agenda at the beginning of the call so that everyone can be prepared. It lessens the possibility of awkward silences
- Ask everyone to avoid multitasking.If everyone’s full attention is on the call, you can minimize the time spent on recaps and redundancies. Remind everyone that you would like to end the call at a specific time and the best way to ensure that is for everyone to give their full attention.
- Make sure documents and agenda are circulated at least one hour prior to the meeting. In addition, if you are hosting a webinar make sure you have not just practiced the speech, but also practiced with the technology.
If you are hosting, call in 5 minutes early and welcome everybody by name as they join. This way, your invitees feel like the call is starting out on track. You can also keep track of who is participating in the call.