In Introduction to conference calls in English – Part 1 we looked at several words or phrases you might expect to come across in a conference call. If you are uncomfortable (not relaxed) about using English in a conference call you should do some extra preparation (practice). You should try and get a copy of the agenda and be familiar with the items or topics on it. Each item will be listed individually. You may also see at the end the letters AOB. This means “any other business”. That is an item or items not already covered in the agenda that those present may wish to discuss.
It is always advisable to be in attendance (present in the room) a few minutes before the conference call commences. Try and sit close to the speakers or hand set so you can hear more clearly particularly if there are a lot of people present. This will help you hear the contributions more easily.
If you have to contribute (formally with a pre -prepared presentation) then when it is your turn to speak try and keep your English simple and your sentences short. This will help others to understand and make it easier for you particularly if there is any background noise (noise that is caused by someone or something as you are talking) or a poor reception (poor quality internet).
Once everyone is in attendance (usually the Chairperson will ask quite simply : “is everyone here?”) the call will start and the Chairperson will take each item in turn (one by one). If there is not enough information on a particular item or the person best able to comment on it is absent (not in the room or on the call) then it may be held over/carried forward or adjourned until the next meeting or call.
Hope this helps and your conference call experience will entirely different to this:
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