10 Top Business Conference Call Tips
Making conference calls is a task that often arises in business situations. Conference calls can be complicated interactions and it is helpful to know some tips regarding how to make it go successfully. A successful conference call, in the general sense, accomplishes its objectives and facilitates communication between parties. The following are some tips that can help make your next conference call a good one:
Keep on Topic
The worst thing that can happen to a conference call is that it strays completely off the topic. The chairman of the conference call is the one responsible for keeping the call on topic. This means that if the topic strays, the chairman brings it to everybody’s attention and asserts that the call needs to come back on topic.
Set an Agenda
There should be a clear cut agenda for the call. This is a discussion plan the outlines the major topics that will be covered and the objectives of the call. Having a good agenda is a powerful tool in making sure that the call accomplishes what it sets out to.
Make Sure the Agenda is Clear to All
Everyone involved in the call should have a good idea of what the agenda is. The agenda and overall structure of the call can be types out or even illustrated in a graphics program and emailed or sent by way of instant messaging to the participants before the call even begins.
Make Sure all Parties are Connected
Before you begin talking, make sure all the parties are connected and on the line. If you begin talking before you know who is connected and can hear you, you may end up having to repeat yourself and using up valuable time in the call. Since you want to get all the objectives taken care of during the course of the call, using time economically is important.
Let Each Person Speak
Allow all parties to speak during the call, unless they specifically request not to. There will be people that talk more and others that talk less during this type of interaction, and the chairman of the call has the responsibility of making sure everyone gets a chance to speak.
Use a Good App
The conference call application you use can make a big difference in how well the call proceeds. Consider using a free conference call service like Powownow. Teleconferencing with PowWowNow offers versatile and reliable conference calling functionality and the only charges the customers pay is for the phone service to make the call. The service also offers inexpensive international dial in numbers, scheduling tools, and web conferencing.
Names of participants are important. Make sure to circulate a list of names among the attendees. Also make sure people know who is talking by introducing them or texting their name on the screen.
Keep it Brief
Keep things brief. Brief communication is often clear communication. Overly elaborated points can lead to wasted time. People are often tempted to talk too much so keep this in mind and keep discussion short and to the point.
Consider Recording Call
Consider making a recording of the call so that you can refer back to it later. This can be a useful reference for later discussions.