The 5 rules of conference calling etiquette

mute your phone
conference bridge

Eating or drinking during a call can be distracting and can make it difficult for others to hear you clearly. If you must eat or drink, mute your microphone to avoid any unwanted noises. As the host of a conference call, you should check into the virtual venue as early as possible. This will give you time to check that all the required technology is in place, and allows you to see your conference guests as they arrive.

If many 501c3 meaning are on the line, that number drops to 25%. If you are using a screen sharing service, make sure it works before the call starts and that your counterparts have anything installed that they would need ahead of the call. Agree before the call which person is calling whom and at which number. Emailing three minutes after the call was supposed to start with, “Where should I call you? Don’t put your conference call on hold –First of all, it is a sign of disrespect and shows your lack of attention and interest.

Never assume everyone knows it’s you, especially if you’re working with a remote team where no one has ever met any of the other team members in person. A simple phrase, such as “This is Matthew speaking, and…” or “Hi this is Matthew, Operations Manager” can be used to properly identify yourself and advertise your position within the company. Recently in the UK, a very small number of conference call providers have begun to use 03 numbers, which are included in bundled minutes under Ofcom regulations. This has provided the option to hold conference calls without any costs whatsoever, as call are included in the minutes bundles provided by most UK network operators. There is a general trend for companies in the UK to more to 03 numbers for inbound services because these numbers are more palatable to the caller. In some platforms, you can just sign off, and no one will know; in others, your face or name disappears from the shared screen.

  • It will help keep the meeting focused, on track, and productive.
  • If you have something else scheduled, you’re more likely to be called on to share updates and add feedback early on.
  • Let attendees know that if they have questions, you’ll answer them.
  • Following these best practices will also ensure everyone feels like a valuable member of the team, resulting in you getting the most out of each participant.
  • By following this one piece of phone conference etiquette, you can expect increased participation and more successful calls.

If you know you can’t make the meeting, let someone else in attendance know. This way, even though you aren’t there, you aren’t holding things up! And if you have important updates but can’t be present, communicate them to a trusted team member. Politely request feedback or input from people who may not seem as invested in the meeting.

Conference Call Etiquette Tips

Bearing in mind the projected duration of the total call, you should also set up a time-frame allocating a greater proportion of this time to the priority issues. Additional features, storage, and support start at just one low price. Sign up for a free Webex account, and take advantage of one of the most modern and innovative solutions on the market. Alex is the President & Founder of The Muse, where she focuses on the growth and operations of the fast-growing business and pursuing constant innovation.


Instead, try leading your conference calls with videos rather than presentation decks. Following some basic conference call etiquette ensures that all participants leave feeling heard, inspired, and ready for action. provides the highest quality, feature packed audio conferencing for free. Our system can handle both small and large conference calls.

Conference Call Etiquette – Key to Productive Virtual Meetings

But when you plan a conference call well and stick to some standard rules, it can go very smoothly. But it’s an essential ingredient to success in the workplace. With the fast pace at which the world has changed, communication has become an essential skill as organisations have embraced the remote work model in one form or another.

Going into a conference call that doesn’t have an agenda is not only frustrating but it’s also unproductive. Your employees are busy and don’t take kindly to any activity that detracts from their main mission. That is, to mute your phone should outside noise be a factor in your phone call. The uninterrupted rule applies to the entire call, not just to introductions or figuring out names and titles. A conference call is only truly effective if everyone’s voice is heard in full. Whether you’re talking about a huge project or some minor policy changes, whoever is in the conference call is there for a reason, and their voice is equally as important as everyone else’s.

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If you’re a conference delegate, you should endeavor to be a little bit early . At least be on time – but if you have to be late for any reason, try not to disturb the flow of the discussion, and use whatever channels are available to catch up on what’s been said. All-in-one room devices for video meetings, digital whiteboarding, and content share.

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It’s bad conference etiquette to be called on and be unprepared. Just because it’s on a platform/phone doesn’t mean your meeting prep is any different. Have notes on your phone next to you, and bookmark anything you need for reference. FlexJobs’ focus is on the flexible work environment, and the company recently released a list of the top 13 tips for remote conference etiquette. This is especially important if you’re on a call with a large group of people, and it’s hard to keep track of who is saying what.

Value a Participant’s Time

The more people on the line, the less everyone pays attention. Schedule the call for the length of time you need, and remember that this can be five, 10, or 20 minutes. You should not be rounding to the nearest 30-minute increment. Generally, if you are asking something of someone else, you should offer to call them. If you are helping someone else, ask that person to call you to avoid having to chase anyone down.

And if your company uses the former, don’t cut out just because you can. If you have a conflicting appointment, tell everyone at the start of the meeting or send an email ahead of time. There may very well be a recorder, but if there are notes that you’ll need to do your job better, take charge and jot them down yourself. Some people also record conference calls so they don’t miss anything. However, if that sounds like a plan for you, make sure to ask a manager in advance.

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If you’ve ever been on a phone conference before, you’re likely aware that there’s an unspoken code of behavior that is very different from regular calls. The introduction of additional callers plus the potential complications from today’sphone conferencingtechnology can make things complicated. Another important aspect of conference call etiquette you must follow is respecting and valuing time. Let everyone know what time the conference call will start and what time you expect it to end. Virtual conference calls to achieve organisational goals. Whether you’re hosting an internal conference call or an external one, there’s usually no manual to help direct you to conduct a successful one.

Act and speak as if you’re in person

Introducing yourself and the participants of your conference call is good etiquette. Whether you work on the same team and are familiar with each other or not, introductions are crucial. They help everyone know who’s in the meeting and what capacity they are in. Introductions are a great way to break the ice, get people comfortable, as well as test their equipment. While this may seem like basic conference call etiquette, it must never be overlooked.

Calls dropping or static noise can be quite frustrating to a group when you are having a conversation. I have been on a call and someone is speaking and then goes silent mid-sentence, then comes back at the end. You ask them to repeat and then the meeting is going over because of this. It takes away from time spent elsewhere and eliminates the productivity of the call.

The organizer can end the call when desired, and callers may drop off at any moment. It’s common phone conference etiquette to put your phone on mute when you aren’t talking on a call. Conference calls are increasingly used in conjunction with web conferences, where presentations or documents are shared via the internet. This allows people on the call to view content such as corporate reports, sales figures and company data presented by one of the participants.

  • A Polycom phone made specifically for conference calls.
  • You will create unusual silence in the conversation and will waste your time repeating yourself.
  • For 87 percent of businesses, they are the preferred way to communicate with a mobile workforce.
  • While it’s important to speak up, it’s just as important to quiet down, too.
  • However, the Internet and improved global VoIP networks have helped to significantly reduce the barrier of entry into this niche.
  • Conference calls are increasingly used in conjunction with web conferences, where presentations or documents are shared via the internet.

If your call has many participants from different departments, you might want to be a little more flexible as you’re dealing with multiple people and their busy schedules. Ultimately, if you’re hosting the call, it’s up to you to decide how long to wait. If it’s unlikely that you’ll find a new time that reasonably works for everyone on the call, it might be worth it to wait minutes in order to complete the call in the first place. However, if the main stakeholders for the call are already present, you can probably begin the meeting without issue.

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She has a BA in Broadcast Journalism and Cinema Critical Studies and a Master’s of Professional Writing, both from USC. Nadine has more than 20 years experience as a journalist covering film, TV, entertainment, business, and fashion. Her background includes working as an editor and/or reporter for publications including People magazine, TV Guide, The Los Angeles Times, The Hollywood Reporter, and USA Today. Remember, too–if you’re on an audio-only call–that people can’t see you, so you can’t nod in response or agreement. FlexJobs suggested you narrate what you’re doing, so there aren’t long stretches of silence while you’re searching on your desk for a report, etc. Finally, make sure to say good bye, and do so with a smile.


Conference call etiquette is essential to productive meetings. Following these best practices will also ensure everyone feels like a valuable member of the team, resulting in you getting the most out of each participant. If you don’t stick to the agenda for your conference call, not only will you run the risk of going off-topic, but you’ll also end up losing the attention of your participants. With these ten conference call best practices, you’re set to maximise the limited time you have with your participants. It will also ensure that everyone on your team enjoys these sessions and participates as fully as they can.

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