Dos And Donts For Conference Calling

by : Ajeet Khurana



Every one of us has wondered what the "do"s and "don't"s of conference calling are. Indeed it does, and should be followed if you want to make your next conference call a winning one.

There are several stories of how conference calls went sour, and turned into shouting matches. It failed because of odd background noises, such as the sound of a dog barking somewhere outside, that of loud typing on a keyboard, babies crying in the distance, and so on.

It is true that the person on the other side cannot see you. It should not mean that you get busy with your other work while the conference call is on. It is imperative that you should not carry a bag of pretzels while you are walking in for a conference call. The munching of the pretzels would be heard all over the place and this could be terribly distracting.

You also should not carry your laptop in a conference call and start to energetically type out matters that are different from the matters being discussed. The sound of your typing would not only be a noisy distraction, but would show your disrespect to others in the room.

THE DO'S AND DON'TS

The conference call is becoming a mode of conducting official affairs. Thus, it has its own rules of etiquette, which set the path towards having a successful and meaningful communication.

THE DO'S

* Before you go into a conference call, you should be well prepared on the subject matter of discussion.

* You should be punctual, and arrive before the conference call can begin.

* You should adjust the volume of the microphone and speak clearly into it.

* Before you start to talk about matters of concern, you must tell the others who you are.

* As you begin, you should be brief and to the point. Also, when asking questions you should name the person to whom your question is directed.

* You would need to remember that, the participants in the conference call cannot see you, and hence, are not aware of your expressions, or other non-verbal communication. For this reason you should express yourself in verbal terms.

* You should be aware of the conference call agenda and the time that you have been allotted for making presentations or fielding questions.

* You would be required to see that background noises, if any, should be almost negligible.

* When mentioning telephone numbers or web site addresses, speak slowly and do not rush. Repeat them for a better comprehension.

THE DON'TS

* Do not ever put your conference phone on hold. If you do that it may start playing music which would disturb the discussions of the others. It is always better to mute your phone and call back into the conference.

* Do not carry on a conversation with the person sitting by your side while a conference call is going on.

* Do not use acronyms or terms specific to your agency.

Always maintain a friendly attitude towards the other participants. Do not worry about the titles of the people attending the conference. In fact, try not to be either overly formal or informal.