Conference Call Etiquette Should be Required Teaching in Schools

Today children, let’s discuss how to be a good conference call participant.  I attend many conference calls, for better or for worse.  I can tell you with iron clad confidence that there is only one critical aspect to being a good con-call participant:

Treat your mute button like a walkie-talkie

That’s it.

There’s just no reason you need to snort, sniff, sip, cough, breathe, gasp, chuckle, smack, slurp, swallow, blow, whistle, whoop, grunt, puff, groan, squeak, sigh, or wheeze even once that your fellow call participants can hear.  When you have something to say, collect your thoughts, come off mute and say it.  Then mute again.  Simple.  It also has the following side benefits:

  • It improves the audio quality on your end (and for everyone else)  since it reduces the bandwidth needed (don’t ask why I know this, but I can assure you that sadly I do)
  • Your friends/coworkers will appreciate it too, with fewer interruptions in the audio stream that sound like interjections that result in those awkward go/no you go moments.
  • You may find you are more purposeful in what you say since it’s not just an open channel for whatever falls from your brain onto your tongue.  That could mean shorter calls, and everyone can get behind those.

That’s it for today, kids.

Ramble back at me....