How to Run an Effective Conference Call
Conference calls are an effective business tool for a myriad reasons. From updating internal employees about changes or keeping customers up-to-date on company happenings, conference calls are one way of communicating this information. The key to running an effective conference call, according to All Conference Services, starts in the preparation you do before the conference call begins.
1. Write a conference call agenda. Type up an agenda for the conference call so the participants can follow along so you as the conference call facilitator can keep the call on track.
2. Distribute the agenda. Once you finalize the agenda, send it to call participants via email the day before or the day of the conference call.
3. Gather your notes five to 10 minutes before the scheduled call time. Effective conference calls start by beginning and ending according to the schedule set in the agenda.
4. Choose a quiet place to conduct the call. Close your office door or go into a business conference room where you can conduct the call in a quiet place without distractions.
5. Set expectations of the call upfront. When you first start the call, let attendees know the rules of the call. For example, tell them how to mute and un-mute their lines, whether you&rsquo;ll be taking questions on the call, and if so how&mdash;at the end of the call, via Twitter, for example.
6. Follow the agenda. To keep the call from veering off on a tangent or off topic, stick to the agenda.
7. Do a recap at the end of the call. Near the end of the call, save a few minutes at the end of the conference call to recap the information covered on the call.
8. Provide contact information or further steps. You may provide your contact information or the appropriate contact information for those on the call who have questions or need to follow up after the call ends. If the attendees have something to do after the call ends, be sure to let them know the next step.