With the cost of travel constantly on the rise, many companies have turned to speakerphone conferences to take the place of face-to-face business meetings. A phone conference can be a bit different than a personal meeting because of the limitations of speakerphone, and the fact that everyone cannot see each other for body language cues and eye contact when speaking.
Limitations of speaker phones
Speaker phones today offer a high-quality connection between two meeting facilities, but they have some limitations. True two-way speaker phones allow each side of the conversation to speak simultaneously without cutting each other off.However, they are very expensive, so most companies have standard one-way speaker phones. This means that people using speaker phones for conference calls must be used to allowing others to speak in order for everything to be heard. Many companies adopt speaker phone etiquette rules which allow people to speak only when they are given the floor by the local meeting moderator, or in some cases the side which is listening will hit the mute button so as not to disturb what the other side is saying.
Try to put speaker phones in rooms which have as little ambient noise as possible to allow people to have more efficient conversations. There are usually small noises which occur during a meeting that most people do not pay attention to. However, even the smallest noise can affect a speaker phone conference call. For example, if someone is speaking and a pen clicks loudly in the background, then for this single second, the call will drop out. Advice to prevent noise during the meeting Make sure that all laptops, pens, papers, notebooks, and anything else which can make noise is left away from the speaker phone. It is best to have a pen ready and notebook open before the meeting starts in order to take notes. If you need to move papers around, then do so quietly. Take into consideration that some conference phones come with either half or full duplex abilities. Half and duplex abilities Half duplex only allows one person to speak at a time while the other party cannot be heard, whereas a full duplex allows flowing conversation to be heard on both sides of the phone line.
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