Strategies to inspire attendance of International Conference Calls
Hosting an international conference call involves more than signing up for a teleconferencing account, scheduling the conference, and inviting participants. It also means keeping conference call attendees engaged and interested. If you’ve ever attended a boring or useless conference call, you know the pitfalls of poor planning. Use these tips to plan an engaging international conference call.
- Determine what you want to accomplish before you schedule the call. By planning your topics beforehand, you’ll have a better idea of how much time you need. If you only need 20 minutes to accomplish the goal of the international conference call, schedule accordingly. Your participants would prefer a short, on-task meeting over an overly long one with no clear direction.
- Create and distribute an agenda for the call in advance. Again, your attendees will appreciate knowing what to expect and how much time they’ll be required to invest in the teleconference. The agenda will also be helpful for potential attendees to determine if their attendance is necessary.
- Adhere to the agenda’s topics and time limits. If you’ve designated 10 minutes for an individual to speak on a given topic, you may need to jump in if the speaker goes over the allotted time period. As the moderator of the call, it’s your job to moderate the pace of the call. If a speaker doesn’t use up the entire allotment, you can either use that time for questions and answers or wrap up the call a few minutes early. It’s helpful to have a list of alternate topics to discuss if time allows.
- Use icebreakers at the beginning of the call. With an international conference call, you’ll have participants from around the globe. A quick icebreaker game or a short round of introductions can be fun and interesting to callers. For larger groups, individual introductions are time-prohibitive. In this case, a few shout outs, such as “We have callers from Hong Kong, Canada, London, and South Africa.” If you’re using the chat tool in conjunction with your international conference call, you could also prompt attendees to enter their names and locations in the chat box.
- Offer an incentive to stay on the conference call. Staying on task and delivering relevant content are vital to your teleconference’s success. However, people often sneak out toward the end of the call for any number of reasons. One way to keep them tuned in is to offer an incentive at the end. It could be as simple as randomly awarding a $10 Starbucks card or offering a special offer on a product of interest to your attendees.
With advance planning and a solid agenda, your next international conference call can be a resounding success!