During a conference call, the rare businessperson hasn’t wanted to blurt out something along the lines of:
* This person’s a #%*&@!
* They’re so lying!
* This is B-O-R-I-N-G!
You may be thinking these things. These things may be true. However, saying them aloud to everyone the phone will compromise your professionalism at the least.Regardless of whether you’re in a room with one of those Polycom Frisbee-style speakers sitting on the conference table or using your headset to participate in a virtual conference call, the danger exists. Just as there’s an advantage to speaking with more than one person simultaneously, there’s also a disadvantage: you must watch what you say.
Fortunately, there’s a solution: Use the mute button.
Unless you want to speak with everyone, keep the mute button engaged at all times. That way they don’t need to hear you eating, breathing, or drinking either.
The mute button ensures that no one can hear you, but often you need to talk strategy with your colleagues during a call. You need to ask questions like:
* What’s the ROI for the campaign?
* Is that delivery date workable for your team?
* Does that match your projections?
If your team in one conference room and the others are on the phone, the mute button is again the perfect solution. But what if your all on the phone, dispersed at multiple locations? Keep the mute button on still unless you’re addressing everyone, but agree with your team in advance that you’ll all have your instant messaging clients up and running during the call. That way you can communicate covertly without anyone knowing — let’s face it the other team is doing it too.
By embracing the mute button, you’ll eliminate the chances of a faux pas, but you can’t ever take it for granted especially after the call ends. Always be sure that the call has ended and you’ve actually hung up. There’s nothing worse than thinking you’re no longer connected — for an example look no further than CNN’s Kyra Phillips, who thought her microphone was off when it most decidedly wasn’t.