Videos become viral on the Internet for a variety of reasons, but one major one is because there is truth to them. If you’ve ever been on a conference call, we’ve got a treat for you (along with some helpful conference call etiquette tips)!
FlexJobs recently came across the viral YouTube video “A Conference Call in Real Life” by Tripp and Tyler, a sketch comedy duo. In the video, the trials and tribulations of phoning in for a conference call are played out in a real-life conference room. The results are hilarious and, frankly, spot on. It made us think about all the things that can—and do—go wrong during a conference call, and how to fix them. Here are five conference call etiquette tips to ensure that your next call goes off without a hitch.
Find a quiet location.
Sure, you may be used to the sound of the snow plows barreling down your street, but your coworkers on the conference call aren’t. When people are focusing solely on your voice, it’s important to make sure that your background noise is kept to a minimum. So if your home office for the day is your local coffee shop, you may want to consider changing your location, especially if you need to speak during the conference call.
There’s nothing worse than getting called on during a meeting only to be caught unprepared. So prep for a conference call just as you would any other meeting. Have notes in front of you, and clear your computer screen of any unnecessary tabs that might prevent you from navigating to the information you need to access.
Secure your pets.
Your Rottweiler puppy Jake may be your faithful work-from-home office mate, but that doesn’t mean your colleagues want to hear him barking at the mailman when it’s your turn to speak. Make sure that your pets are secured (read: inaudible) before you dial in to your meeting. Be sure to close the door to your home office to avoid hearing the ensuing whimpering.
It goes without saying that you should be 100 percent focused on the call. But let’s face it: your mind can (and will) wander. Keep yourself motivated—and your energy up—by standing while working and speaking during your meeting. You can try doing stretches and lunges to keep your mind alert and prepare yourself both physically and mentally should you get called on by your boss to give an update.
When there are several people on the conference call, it can be hard to get a word in edgewise. That doesn’t mean that your voice shouldn’t be heard, though. A big conference call faux pas is going through an entire meeting without speaking up once. So whether it’s to ask a question or offer a comment or suggestion, make sure that you do contribute to the conference call in one way or another.
The viral video “A Conference Call in Real Life” shows telecommuters all the things that can go wrong when you call in for a conference. Now that you know what can go wrong, work to turn those wrongs into rights—and success for your next conference call!
Readers, have you ever experienced any of the things in the “A Conference Call in Real Life” video? What are your conference call etiquette tips? Let us know in the comments section below!