A teleconference is basically a meeting of a few people who are not present in the same place, with the help of electronic communication. The participants of the meeting may be in different parts of the country or even in the same city. The conference can be a one-way session, which various people just need to attend, or may be an interactive session. At times, only three to five people can be involved, sometimes 30 to 35, and maybe even hundreds. Teleconferencing is a perfect way to bring together people separated by distance, for business, without them actually having to travel.
There are three types of teleconference – voice only (conference calls), voice and video (video conference), and web-based conference. A conference call just involves two or more participants, and usually requires only a telephone, though a speaker phone can be used if more than two people are present in the site.
In a video conferencing, two or more groups of people present in different locations get to interact with each other through a video call, or they may simply view a presentation and later give their responses. For this kind of teleconferencing, a live TV with video cameras and microphones attached is needed.
A computer-based conference is quite like a video conference wherein large groups of people get to interact with each other, and can have a visual and audio contact. In this case, for video transmission, high-speed internet connection, computer screens, and a good cloud video conferencing software like ezTalks Cloud Meeting is used.
How to Teleconference in Real Life
Let us now go through a step-by-step process to organize a perfect teleconference.
1. Decide the Time and Date
The first and the most important thing you need to do is to decide the date and time for the conference, let the participants know about it, and also let them know about the roles they will have to play. Do not forget to send them a reminder a day before the meeting.
2. Decide the Equipment You Will Use
Using the right equipment is very important if you want to run a successful conference in real life, as the success or failure of the conference depends on the same. As already mentioned, if you plan to organize a simple telephonic conference then you will just need a phone, perhaps with speakers. For a video conference you will need a live TV with microphones and video cameras attached, and for a web-based conference, you need a good internet connection, computer screens, and good video conference software.
3. Plan the Agenda
Preferably a day before the teleconference, forward a meeting agenda to every participant. You must clearly mention in the agenda the role of the different participants. This will helps everyone be prepared for the conference in the right way. This also will help the meeting to be crisp and precise, instead of long, boring ones. Time is money, and that surely is something you would not want to waste by not being prepared.
4. Do Not Let Things Wander
It is easy for a teleconference to wander off because it is a get together of many people who may not have even spoken to each other much. So, the leader of the conference must make sure the agenda is followed, and if some points come up that are not related to the agenda, they can be saved for a future conference.