You may have see this conference call in real life video already, it’s from comedians Tripp and Tyler.

It’s a delicious combination of uncomfortable to watch and funny too (which probably explains why it has over 16 million views on YouTube!).

The participants experience all the hazards of real life conference calls. The pain we’ve all experienced is laid out before us to enjoy!

Take a look.

The ‘Conference call in real life’ video:

Yes, it’s cringe-worthily funny, exactly because we’ve all been there ourselves. But how can we avoid the pain again?

3 quick tips to avoid the pain

Here are our 3 quick tips to avoid the pain of conference calls:

Apply our meeting best practices

At the end of this conference call in real life, the main character says:

Beth, you’ll send out a recap email, that basically could have taken the place of this whole meeting, correct?

In our effective meetings article we list provide all the best practices to avoid this kind of problem: from planning meetings, to leading meetings and the after-action follow-up.

Our first tip: be even more rigorous in applying the best practices of effective meetings.

Apply the tech to your advantage

Then, make sure you’re applying the tech of virtual meetings to your advantage. Use the whiteboards, the polling function, the ‘hand raised’ function, the ‘mark up’ function. They will build interactivity and engagement.

Our second tip: learn to love the tech! A little investment in how it works will deliver significant improvements down the line.

Use video calls!

OK, this might sound a little counter intuitive, but on conference calls we miss all the cues available to us in ‘face-to-face’ interactions. Which is one of the main reasons they’re so painful.

All the interruptions and misjudged comments take place because we can’t see people ‘leaning in’, or raising an eyebrow, or sharing a wry smile.

And there are enough stable, mobile-friendly, video-enabled services available to make conference calls a thing of the past. For example, at SkillPacks we love http://zoom.us/.

Our third tip: go video!

In summary

  1. Be even more rigorous in applying the best practices of effective meetings.
  2. Learn to love the tech: invest a little time, you’ll soon see the benefits.
  3. Go video! You’ll really benefit from that ‘face-to-face’ interaction.

And a final bonus tip! Check out Cost effective meetings: 5 quick tips to improve your bottom line.

And once you’ve done all of that, you should fully expect to end up with this, a video conference call in real life:

At which point, put your head in your hands and check out some more lighthearted learning!

Useful? Share it with your network.

They'll be pleased to hear from you!