Conference call woes

David Grady’s highly amusing observations on the problems inherent in conference calls definitely grabbed my attention, not only because I can relate them to my experiences of running regular meetings on the phone, but also because of the similar issues that can be faced in online meetings.

Just as David’s meeting is constantly interrupted by new participants entering the conference, so many web conferences are thrown off by late-comers who (1) haven’t had a chance to introduce themselves, (2) are not sure what’s happened so far and (3) want to test that you can hear them. I’m not sure I’ve got a strategy to overcome this. In a face-to-face meeting, people can just sheepishly take a seat and hope no-one notices they’re late, but this doesn’t seem to happen online. Ideas?

By the way, if you’re looking for ways to overcome the conference call difficulties expressed in David’s video, you’ll find a wealth of tips at Michele Martin’s Bamboo Project Blog.

About Clive Shepherd

Clive Shepherd has written 241 post in this blog.

Clive is a consultant specialising in the application of technology to learning and business communications. He was previously Director of Training and Creative Services for a multinational corporation and co-founder of a major multimedia development company. For four years he was chair of the eLearning Network.

Comments

  1. Leading effective conference calls is an issue, especially if it’s one with a large number of attendees. Check out my post on this subject at http://www.expressivetech.com/2010/08/20/tips-for-leading-a-great-conference-call/ .

  2. Mike Damiano says:

    Excellent! ;-) I once worked with a senior programme manager at Becta who used to lock the door 60 seconds into any meeting. You’re not on time, you don’t have your say. Requires a certain level of confidence but I never saw people arrive late to his meetings.

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