Any significant endeavor or operation can benefit from a checklist—especially conference calls. If CEOs, busy parents, and even Santa Claus uses them, there’s got to be some benefit to using a checklist, right? What better way to make sure you turn the heat down before leaving for vacation, pick up those eggs at the supermarket or change that word at the end of the meeting brief you wrote yesterday?
Before you pick up that phone and hop on your next conference call, make sure to run down yours. If you don’t have one yet, borrow from ours:
Prepare for the conference call:
- Have I emailed invitations to the call?
- Do the invitations include the correct time and date for the call?
- Do the invitations have all the necessary pass codes and dial-in numbers or better yet, a link to the conference so the system dials to the participants?
- Have I reserved a quiet location where distractions will be minimal to nonexistent?
The meat of your meeting:
- Have I created an agenda for the call?
- If the call will include a guest speaker, have I set aside adequate time?
- Have I decided on a format?
- Do I have a clear goal in mind for this call?
- Have I collected and organized my notes?
- Do I have all the participants’ names?
- Have I provided the participants with any materials they might need?
- Does each participant know his or her role (secretary, moderator, etc.)?
- Am I familiar with how to record the call for future reference?
- Have I done a practice run to ensure the sound is of high quality?
- Do I know how to reach technical support if something comes up?
- If the meeting involves a web conference, has everyone sharing documents downloaded the software?
Tell us, do you have a meeting checklist that has helped you?