As a key part of corporate business life, it can come as a shock that conference calls are not always used to their best advantage in the workplace.
Rather than remaining productive and professional, conference calls can often end as awkward and unsuccessful interactions.
If you’re running an Orlando conference call and want it to run smoothly, check out the 9 tips below. We’ll make sure you achieve just that!
9 Ways to Ensure a Productive Orlando Conference Call
1. Get Comfortable with Your Conference Phone
First thing’s first. Before beginning your Orlando conference call, make sure you are familiar with your conference phone/equipment.
There are many different kinds of phones designed to help communication for collaborative teams and conference calls.
This means each is a little different, with different features and working ways.
Because of this, you should get to know your individual phone for the conference calls you’ll be involved in.
Whether you’re using a new wireless handset conference phone, or if you are just unaccustomed to conference call equipment altogether, it’s never a bad idea to go through a “trial run.”
This trial run can help you familiarize yourself with your communication devices beforehand. This will save you time and any awkward moments or embarrassments!
While you’re at it, you can also call the conference company and get a quick overview of the different commands that you can use with your device. You may want to know about your mute functions and any of the moderator controls.
With current conference call technology, you have many tools at your disposal. Know what they are and take advantage of them!
2. Get Organized, and Prepare for the Call
As with any other meeting you participate in or facilitate, you’ll need to be organized and prepared in order to succeed during your Orlando conference call.
Believe it or not, while preparation is key to all meetings, preparing can prove to be even more valuable for a conference call than it is for a face-to-face meeting.
To be prepared, begin by making sure everyone knows when the meeting times are set.
Include when the meeting will begin and end, and if there are any breaks included in that call time.
Next, circulate an agenda to all involved parties.
Since an agenda helps to structure the conference call and allows members to prepare in advance by providing the types of information they will need to effectively participate in the discussion, this is one step NOT to skip.
Then, ensure that each participant has access to the proper conference calling equipment.
You may want to suggest that your team replace any old or outdated equipment to ensure clarity and avoid issues.
3. Pick a Place For Peace and Quiet
While this step may seem obvious, it can be easily overlooked but is totally necessary to limit chaos and maximize productivity for your call.
During the hustle and bustle of setting up everything that goes into a conference call, it can be simple to skip over this step and forget about finding the right location.
To ensure a successful Orlando conference call, you need to lock down a location absent of distractions.
This means you will want a spot without background noise to disrupt the meeting and a clean room without clutter to distract participants in the room.
Additionally, limit the number of people on the call. Try to keep your number of participants to four or five max.
With larger numbers and more people in the rooms, chaos is sure to follow.
More people makes for more opinions and therefore more problems!
Quick Tip: Do NOT forget to silence any of your electronic equipment, and remind others to as well. This will contain and minimize extra distractions and disruptions as well.
4. Put Down What’s Not Necessary—Do NOT Multitask
Unless you’re taking notes with that paper and pen or keyboard in front of you, push it to the side. Save those mindless scribbles for later.
It can be easy to become distracted during your conference call. This can result in serious consequences.
Since your Orlando conference call is just that—a call and not an in-person interaction—it can be tempting to do other things during your time on the phone.
However, resist the urge to check email or organize paperwork. Doing too many things at once is distracting.
Not only will these distractions lead to you missing important details of the call, but it will also come through to other conference call attendees. It could hurt your image.
5. Speak Slowly to Communicate Clearly to Avoid Misunderstandings
During your conference call, speak clearly. Speak slowly. Make sure those on the other line can understand you.
Remember that not everyone will have the same quality Orlando business phone service and systems as you.
Keep in mind that if you have several people in your office or small meeting room who are also participating in the call, you’ll want to make sure that every participant’s voice is picked up.
So, remind others to speak loud and clear.
6. Monitor Your Voice & Your Tone
Unlike with a face-to-face meeting, you can’t rely on body language and eye contact to help convey your message.
Try to sound enthusiastic but also in-charge during the call.
Make sure you’re continually monitoring your tone of voice to be sure you are conveying the mood and spirit you want in your conference call. You don’t want any misunderstandings.
Keeping your tone of voice enthusiastic will help encourage the other participants to stay attentive.
7. Start Focused, Stay Focused, and Take Notes
While it’s imperative to focus on subject matter, also make sure you are staying focused on your time element as well during the call.
Because not all issues require the same amount of discussion time, keep your eye on the clock and know how long to talk about each one.
Keep in mind that any issue that can be resolved offline or doesn’t require input from the majority of the group on the Orlando conference call should be dismissed as quickly as possible so you can move on to the next topic.
If you’re struggling to stick with it, take out your pen and paper and try taking notes to ensure you keep focused on the material at hand.
In general, taking notes during your meeting is a good idea.
Whether your meeting is meant to discuss minor or major issues, plans, dilemmas or goals, you don’t want to miss or forget any details. Make sure to take your notes!
8. Stick to the Point & Get Through the Agenda First
Keep your call short and sweet if possible.
You should have created an agenda and sent it out to participating parties. Be sure to reiterate this agenda and its main points at the beginning of the call.
By sticking to the point and the agenda provided, each participant knows what to expect.
This will also help to avoid any rambling speakers—which are not only boring but will also lose a listening audience very quickly.
Getting through the agenda first makes for an attentive and engaged audience. Consider dealing with any matters not listed on the agenda at the end of your Orlando conference call.
This way you’ll be able to prevent getting sidetracked and losing precious time needed for covering the more relevant issues at hand.
Since notes are usually necessary, also consider using headsets during your conference call. This will allow you to participate hands-free so you can jot down notes or type them up right there on the spot.
9. Summarize and Follow Up On Meeting Proceedings
Make sure the meeting was worth everyone’s time by summarizing and following up on the Orlando conference call.
You can set aside a few minutes at the end of the call to review any major new projects that were brought up. You can even follow up with an email after.
Take that time to identify any issues or questions that were brought up in the conference call that will need to be further explored.
Quick Tip: Don’t forget to thank everyone for his or her participation in the Orlando conference call and sign off with a goodbye.
Are you a conference call pro? How about a newbie? We want to hear what you have to say! Tell us in the comments what you’ve learned in your conference call experience. What else would you like to learn?