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Primer on running a stress free online meeting

We all could probably fill volumes with the business know-how that we didn't learn in school, from how to deal with different personalities to say when you realize you've left project meeting notes sitting on the kitchen counter. How to run a stress-free, results-producing teleconference would probably make that list.

Here's a primer on running an online meeting that focuses on getting the results that will make you smile:

  • We all know the pain of being trapped in a long, long, long meeting. A simple way to make a longer conference call more pleasant--and more productive--is to schedule breaks that allow everyone to stretch their legs, refill the coffee cup, and use the restroom.
  • Common courtesy dictates that if you're running a face-to-face meeting you should not check email, take another phone call, or text your friends. The same common courtesy applies for teleconferencing. The meeting will run more efficiently (and probably take less time!) if you focus on the task at hand.
  • Maybe you need to break up an argument the kids are having in your home office or perhaps you need to talk to an in-room colleague. Whatever the reasons are you need to "mute" the conversation. Make sure the headset or phone has a mute indicator button so you know exactly when you're in broadcast mode..
  • Consider an operator-assisted online meeting, especially if you're in charge of a high-profile event or a conference call with a large number of attendees. A professional operator can handle the logistics, so you can focus on accomplishing your goals.

With some planning you can become a Master of the Conference Call. Okay, maybe you won't be able to list that particular achievement on your resume, but it will at least make your teleconferences more efficient and more productive.

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