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Reflecting Upon A Conference Call In Real Life

snom MeetingPoint conference phoneLast week a pair of comedians, Tripp and Tyler, released a video called A Conference Call In Real Life. The video lampoons some of the common issues of user experience with corporate conference calls. It’s part of a campaign designed to promote the Leadercast Live event that they have coming up in May.

The video set certain corners of the social media space reverberating with guffaws, likes, +1’s and commentary. Corporate types like Orange Business tweeted about it. While it was released over a week ago, the echo of its impact is only now decaying from the vast expanse of cyberspace.

Apparently it held a ring of truth for many people. Frankly, it caused me some agitation.

Surveying the various reactions of people proved interesting. Some people commented with respect to how new technologies, as manifest in up-and-coming products, would help with the issues that the clip highlighted.

Do you have trouble entering a conference call? We can fix that.

Is your computer missing a required plug-in? We can fix that, too.

Are you mobile? No problem.

Are you in a Starbucks? OK, fine.

What I see in this most recent video are not issues that have technological solutions. What I see are issues of human nature.

The various technical issues that are presented are already matters that have been resolved. Conferencing without codes has been done for years. Sensible, proactive platform management ensure that people have up-to-date systems, anti-virus and could easily include the any required browser plug-ins.

Many of the human factors issues arise from what I consider to be simple errors in judgment. Do you really need to join the call from your mobile phone at a coffee shop? That seems to me a choice you make to disregard the call experience over your own convenience and coffee habit.

Seth Godin responded to the video with a  short post entitled, “Conference Call Hygiene.” It’s definitely worth your time. Moreover, the guidance that Seth offers renders the original act of watching the video a worthwhile exercise. He provides the insight that raises it up from being just another distraction in your day.

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