No Cost Conference is aware how important it is to have proper etiquette while attending a personal or business conference call. We’d like to offer a few suggestions, which we try to implement ourselves, while on conference calls.

The following guidelines may prove useful to you when using our, or any other, conference call services:

Inviting parties – Request for a conference call
If you are initiating the call, ask others if they have time, or will be at an appropriate place, to attend your conference call at your suggested time.

Topics during a conference call
It is best to avoid off-topic conversations, since some individuals at the conference may feel left out if you share a private joke with others. Casual initial conversation on general topics ensures that all of your colleagues are comfortable during the conference call.

Invitations for a conference call in progress
It’s best to get a positive affirmation from all others on the call before inviting others to join into the ongoing conference. This is very important while discussing sensitive business issues, as introducing a new participant may be an unwelcome surprise.

People around you during a conference call
Be considerate of people standing or sitting near you, and always try to ensure you are far enough from other people so they are not forced to listen in on your call.

Avoid shouting during a conference call
When confronted with background noise or problems with a bad connection, we tend to raise our voices without realizing, in order to be heard properly. Nowadays, most phones have very sensitive microphones capable of picking up the lowest of speech tones. Try to maintain a normal tone of voice.

Appropriate place for a conference call
Please avoid talking while driving. If it is an important business conference call, it’s certainly best to pull over and avoid disaster. The cell-savvy user would never use a mobile while driving, except if it’s “hands-free,” and they limit conversations while in traffic.

On the subject of background noise, is you know you’re going to be speaking on the call, make sure you are in an area with little background noise, and good cell reception if necessary. It’s horrible for you, and the other callers if, when it’s time for you to present your ideas, they can only hear every third word and the screech from the subway brakes.

Pleasant tone and discussions
We provide conference call services to aid you in making that important business call or reaching out to your loves ones spread all over the country. We hate to hear reports of conference calls being used for firing or chastising employees, arguing with colleagues, or fighting with a spouse or family. Such matters are best discussed face-to-face, and not really meant for a conference call.

Multi-tasking during a call
We all think we are good at multitasking, and often feel we can carry on certain tasks during a conference call. But there are times when multitasking can be dangerous or even rude. Please refrain as much as possible.

Proper Introductions
When you come onto the call, you will be announced by a beep. Other callers are very much expecting you to introduce yourself. And it doesn’t have to be your full bio and what you had for breakfast, but instead just a simple “This is John Doe, Sales Manager and Ace Widgets” will do nicely.

And don’t forget to reintroduce yourself briefly before speaking, as this provides context and clarity for those following the call or taking notes. Something like “This is John Doe… I feel like the main issue…” is perfect.

Don’t Be Late
You wouldn’t be late for a face-to-face meeting, would you? Conference calls are no different, really, and the other callers deserve respect and the understanding that their time is valuable, too. So make a point of being on time. On those rare occasions when you might be running late, try not to interrupt the call too much, and instead just quickly let everyone know you’re on, and sorry for being late, and then try to get caught up by listening intently.

If a significant number of callers are late to a call, the blizzard of beeps and apologetic intros can completely ruin the flow of the call, constantly interrupting the first speaker. Routine calls with large numbers of participants sometimes choose to implement a late comer policy, similar to sporting events and theater performances where guests are held until there is a break in the action. You can let callers know that they should be on time, of course, and that if they are late they should wait until the 5 minute mark, 10 minute, or 15 minute mark to join in, so it’s less disruptive.

Your Mute Button is There for a Reason
Use it. You may think your office is quiet, or that you don’t make noise when you chew gum (obviously you’re NOT eating your lunch, right?), but your associates on the conference call might beg to differ. Multiply those tiny noise levels by the number of people on the call (10? 50? 200?), and you can be contributing to quite a cacophony. Be smart and use the mute button found on every phone, until it’s your turn to speak.

Despise Non-Productive Calls? Maybe it’s YOU
Everyone hates calls where the conversation circles around, strays off topic, and little gets accomplished. Do your part to keep things moving forward by being prepared (reading on the topic, list of questions), and insisting on a call leader and an agenda before the call begins.

Take Notes, Use the Recordings
On longer calls, or those with complex issues, make sure to jot down notes as you go. This is helpful during the call, and also for follow-ups via email or one-to-one calls. Even a quick note to yourself to review the call recording at a certain time of the call can be very helpful. More on NCC call recordings here »

Thank you for taking the time to read about conference call etiquette, and we hope you enjoy our conference call services for a long time.