Conference calling in business has seen extraordinary growth throughout the last five years due to its declining cost and with businesses experiencing benefits such as cutting travel expenses and having a method of fast, effective communication its usage is set to grow and grow.
I’m sure many have left a conference call feeling frustrated, confused and wondering if they have actually achieved anything. Conducting a good meeting comes with time and experience, follow this five step guide and you’ll be left in good stead for all your future calls.
1. Plan your call
Very important, send out a meeting request to all your participants making sure you include the date, time, dial-in number/s and the PIN. If you have participants in different countries be sure to include the time relevant to their time zone, and if you’ve got participants dialing in from a mobile, be sure to give them the right dial in number to keep their costs down.
2. Have an agenda
This is a necessity to ensure a successful conference call, it should contain all the main points of discussion and shouldn’t be too long. If you are the organiser try to circulate the agenda so all participants can prepare and contribute. Having an agenda also aids in keeping the conference on track and making sure it doesn’t drag.
3. Quiet calm environment
This goes without saying, a calm quiet environment will allow you to focus and concentrate on the call. Disturbances such as dogs barking and college’s laughter will not only distract you but will also distract your fellow participants. Also when someone is speaking use the mute button, this helps to keep background noise to a minimum.
4. Pay attention
Try not to fall asleep. A successful conference call needs useful and valuable input from all participants. If you are the conference organiser try to keep participants alert by keeping them engaged. Don’t drone on about a particular topic for too long, ask questions, get opinions, feedback and invite ideas from your participants.
5. That’s a wrap
At the end of the call, thank all participants for their time making sure all points in the agenda have been discussed and reviewed.
Want to know more? Find out how conference calling works here.