It wasn't too long ago when calling into a conference call required paying attention to your phone type. For
example, the old rules dictated that only callers using landlines could participate. As a caller, you needed to
make sure that you were at a location where you could dial in using a standard landline. If you only had access
via a cell phone or a VoIP phone, you were out of luck or in breach of conference call etiquette. These days, anything
goes on a conference call.
Conference Call Etiquette - Phone Types
New phone bridge technologies make it possible for users of all types of phones to host or participate in conference
calls including standard phones, mobile phones, satellite phones, and VoIP phones. The old restrictions covering
acceptable phone types have largely been removed. Today, it doesn't matter what type of phone you use. Simply dial
in and participate.
However, some telecommunications providers use older bridges, which could cause problems for alternative phone
users. If you're a conference call host, look for a provider that supports all phone types so that your participants
can call in using the phone system of their choice.
Conference Call Etiquette - During the Call
While the old restrictions are long gone, you'll still want to follow basic conference call etiquette such as speaking
clearly and being courteous to others. No matter what type of phone you use to access the call, be aware of your
surroundings and how ambient noises in your environment may be picked up and broadcast to the group.
- Quiet location - Ideally, you should attend the
teleconference from a quiet location. Turn off radios and televisions. If you have dogs or children, make the necessary
arrangements to ensure that you're not interrupted. Keep in mind that the conference call may have dozens of participants,
each with potentially disruptive environments. Make sure that your environment is as quiet as possible and encourage
others to do the same.
- Headset use - If you have a quality, noise-cancelling
telephone headset, consider using it during the conference call. These headsets are designed to filter out background
- Speakerphone use - While speakerphones allow for
hands-free calling, their omnidirectional microphones pick up sounds from around the room. If several people in
your office must participate in a conference call, using the speakerphone feature is okay as it allows a group
to participate. However, if you're a single caller, use a handset or headset and forgo the speakerphone.
- Phone features - Conference call etiquette requires
that you understand how your phone's features may affect other callers. For example, does your phone system play
music when you put a caller on hold? If so, you'll need to make sure not to put the conference call on hold if
you need to step away for a moment. Otherwise, your phone's music-on-hold feature will interrupt the teleconference
for all participants.
Phone bridge technologies have changed, which in turn has affected conference call etiquette. No longer do you
need to worry about what type of phone to use to dial into the call. While anything goes phone-wise, conference
calls haven't turned into a free-for-all. Continue following basic conference call etiquette such as keeping ambient
noise to a minimum and treating others with respect and your next conference call is bound to be a success, especially
if all the other participants follow your lead.
Remember the days when VoIP and cell phones were unwelcome during conference calls? Those days are mostly gone
thanks to new phone bridge technologies. Conference call etiquette is less concerned with phone types, but the
basics still apply.
AIT offers conference calling services with the flexibility that you need.
Not only does AIT offer several terrific plans such as unlimited
conference calling, toll free conference calling, and pay-as-you-go conference calling plans, all plans use
the latest phone bridge technologies to ensure that all callers can participate regardless of phone type.