The awkward silences. The false-starts. The odd background noise. If you have a remote team, you know the symtoms of a terrible conference call.
Seth Godin recently wrote a post on how to fix these often "pointless" and "painful" meetings. Rule number one? "When in doubt, don't have one," he said.
He had a few more tips, which he based on a four-minute video created by sketch comedy duo Tripp Crosby and Tyler Stanton. (Take a mental health break: The video hilariously demonstrates how dysfunctional and unproductive your conference call meetings are.)
To improve, Godin suggests:
1. The maximum length of the call should be 10 minutes. Employees won't even have time to multitask in that short window, so you can expect their undivided attention.
2. If you won't be speaking at meeting, there is no reason for you to be there. You can get caught up with the summary notes later.
3. Don't include more than five people on a conference call. That's lazy. If you have something to share with those individuals, just pick up the phone.