Travel Choice telecon tips
Wednesday, March 18, 2020
A lot of businesses at the moment are being forced to use conference calls and virtual meetings, with business travel very limited due to COVID 19. The technology has been around a while, but here's 10 handy hints and tips to use it:
- Set-up in advance of the call to make sure you know how to dial-in share your screen, mute participants etc.
- Set an agenda and circulate it with the meeting invite. Designate a call leader, set objectives and outcomes for the meeting.
- Be aware that modern software allows people to call in from multiple media. Sharing screens is great, but provide a quick description of any visuals for those having to call in from mobile “on the go”.
- Sound quality is crucial, and there is nothing worse than someone joining in an environment with a lot of background noise. If you’re organising the call, know how to mute participants. If using slides, an initial screen telling people to mute their lines is a good idea. If joining the call, know how to mute your own line. Don’t think your laptop speaker and microphone are good enough – they are not. Invest in a headset.
- It’s a good idea to do a roll-call so everyone knows who is on the call. If you’re on a call where you don’t know everyone, it’s a good idea to identify yourself before you make your first contribution.
- Say at the outset if you need to get off the call early – it saves people wondering where you went, or interrupting the discussion.
- Most software have instant messaging or chat built in – it can be a good idea to use these to ask questions or check things with colleagues to avoid interruptions but make the speaker aware of queries as they go along.
- If you’re chairing, watch out for people who aren’t contributing – especially if their view is important to the ultimate decision. Its too easy for loud voices to dominate.
- If the call is a presentation which would be useful to a wider audience, use the record function and distribute by email to those unable to join.
- Close with a summary of actions, and follow-up by email. Take notes during the call.