7 Tips for Effective Conference Calls
Let’s be honest here: no one looks forward to a conference call. Research even shows that most people aren’t paying attention, with 65 percent of attendees focusing on other work instead. Since it’s hard to get rid of conference calls entirely, it’s up to you to make them interesting and worthwhile. Keep reading for seven tips for effective conference calls that’ll make sure your meetings are quick, efficient, and engaging!
1. Learn When an Email Will Suffice
We’ve all hopped on a conference call that served no purpose. It’s a huge source of frustration, especially when an email would’ve been as effective.
Being a great team leader means making the most of your time. So before you schedule that conference call, ask yourself ‘does this need to be a meeting or can I draft an email and get the same point across?’
2. Give Notice in Advance
It’s best to give employees plenty of time to prepare for the meeting. Unless it’s an absolute emergency, attendees should have a few hours’ notice to get documents and materials ready.
When giving notice, make sure to mention what the call is about, too, so employees don’t fear the worst.
3. Have an Agenda for Each Meeting
What is it you’re hoping to convey to your team during the conference call? Knowing what you want can keep you from wasting time, so bring notes.
If nothing else, jot down some quick bullet points to help you stay on track. When the meeting is over, go back over your notes to double-check that you accomplished your goals.
4. Keep It Brief
Time is money! And the more time you waste, the more money you lose.
Conference calls shouldn’t be any longer than necessary. Get in, get to the point, and get out. Your employees will thank you.
5. Find the Right Software
The only thing more annoying than an unnecessary conference call is a conference call with poor audio.
The right software makes all the difference. While a Skype meeting might work for a few people, you’ll want to look into free conference call software that specifically targets businesses, as they have better infrastructure and tools.
6. Encourage Feedback
To keep those on the conference call engaged, ask if there are any questions or if anything requires clarification.
While this should happen at the end of the call, take periodic breaks during the meeting to make sure everyone is still following along. Don’t monologue, interact.
7. Follow up Later
People have a million things on their minds, and even if you had the perfect conference call, details may slip from memory.
To solidify your points and clarify any questions, send a follow-up email later that afternoon or the following morning. Use bullet points to reintroduce the ideas and concepts you and your team discussed.
This is also of benefit to any team members who weren’t able to attend the call.
Tips for Effective Conference Calls: Work Smarter, Not Harder
With these tips for effective conference calls, you’ll never have to worry about a boring, unnecessary, or unproductive conference call again. Because at the end of the day, time is money and there never seems to be enough of either.
For more great tips on how you can grow your business through technology, make sure to check out the other posts on our blog!