Conference Call Etiquette
Business people should know about conference call etiquette. We can all agree that conference calls are great ways to hold meetings or training from any location at any time. With ease of access to a litany of locations from conference rooms to personal kitchens to join in a conference call, your options are limitless. Add in the ease of using your own personal or work device and you can cut out the travel to the office and get straight to the meeting. With this flexibility comes responsibility.
When you are sitting in a physical meeting, etiquette is almost built into the process. For example, if you doze off in the middle of a meeting, you will get noticed. Another example is the fact that when you speak in a meeting, if you speak too softly, you get immediate correction. When it comes to efficient conference calls, however, the rules change. Therefore, it is important to understand conference call etiquette. Below are some key points to remember when in a conference call.
Stay In The Moment
91% of US citizens have their cell phones within reach according, to HubSpot. This means that no matter how you are participating on a call, you will want to stay focused. Even the slightest distraction can cause you to miss potentially important information, which is why you want to do everything possible to stay focused. This could include turning off your phone, finding a quiet spot free of distractions, taking detailed notes by hand, or intently listening. Imagine that you were leading the meeting. You probably would value everyone paying attention to the call. Therefore, act the way you would want others to act. Plus, it is the professional thing to do.
Use Clear Wording
When we are in person, it is easier to pick up on nonverbal cues and respond appropriately. For example, if you are in a meeting where you find a participant leaning on their hand, you could deduce that they may be bored. You might then ask for a break or adjustment. On the phone, however, you only have the person’s words and tone of voice to gather signals from. Therefore, it is important to use clear wording when speaking.
- Avoid um, uh, and long pauses;
- Speak in clear and concise sentences where your words cannot be misconstrued;
- Ensure that you use appropriate vocabulary for the subject; and
- Enunciate properly.
Showing manners over the phone is a little different than in person. In person, listening is an active process with eye contact and hand gestures. On the phone, silence is golden. When someone is speaking, let him or her finish his or her thought before responding. Additionally, when you do respond, thank the person for the comment and respond by stating if you agree, disagree, or want to add to the statement so that everyone knows your intentions.
When you are done talking, make it known by stating as much. This takes away any guessing where others are not sure if they should respond yet. Plus, it is okay to ask for clarification if you cannot hear someone. Simply state that you would like that repeated; also, take care to use “please” and “thank you.” Lastly, an important part of manners on the phone is eliminating background noise. This shows you are clearly not focused or respectful of the meeting. Ensure you have cleared any possible disruptions, and if you expect one, mute your phone so no one can hear you. Or you should announce in advance to the leader you may be interrupted and why.
Some other key points include:
- State Your Name
- Phone in a couple minutes early
- Maintain clear phone reception
- Stay on topic when speaking
- Be clear of the acting leader
- Mute the phone when not speaking
- Do not eat or drink during call
- Have a list of questions ready
- Prepare yourself
– See more at: https://blueconferencing.com/conference-call-etiquette/#sthash.4T5SB3P8.dpuf