Global conference calls: a great opportunity or a necessary evil?

We’ve all as employees – at one time or another – had to take part in a conference call. Which has subsequently been hampered by bad connections, background noise, cultural clashes and colleagues with different accents or varying levels of English. Not to mention the people who talk too much, too little, or never say a word!

Following a global call you may well end up thinking: “Well that went as well as can be expected.” However, is that really good enough for something so time-consuming? Especially when you take into consideration, not just the time spent on the call, but also preparing for it?
As someone who coaches employees on coping with cultural differences, I’m often asked how to make global conference calls more productive. So I’ve developed some top tips to not only enable businesses to see conference calls as an opportunity to build global leadership skills, but to also deliver them successfully.
The main thing to remember is that there are two main aspects of global conference calls. These often overlap but are both critical to the
time being spent productively.
On the surface level, there are all the obvious complications such as people talking all at once and misunderstanding each other.