This is the only time that we’ll suggest commuting as an alternative to conference calling.
Check out the conference bike… it’s a great way to move your company forward.
It’s that time of year when gas prices start creeping up. Yesterday we had someone in our office pay $60 dollars to fill up their mid-size SUV. That’s high considering we’re located in Texas where gas prices are traditionally low.
So since we are in the business of saving people money, here are some helpful links:
You can also earn a $20 gas card for any conferencing referrals. And if you’re considering commute for a business meeting, remember that a tank of gas ($60) is the same as two, hour-long conference calls for five people
Bad presenters are like toned-def singers… they don’t know how bad they reallyare. So just in
case, here are some tips that will catapult you to becoming the next presentation guru (…or at least point you in the right direction)!
The 10 / 20 / 30 Rule – This stands for ten slides, twenty minutes, and thirty-point font. This is a formula you can implement as you develop and revise your next power point. Remember that the average person can only comprehend about ten different concepts in one sitting. Keep your presentation under twenty minutes to ensure that you leave enough time for Q & A and that you don’t bore listeners with too much information. Lastly, using 30 point font will force you to use fewer words and make your slides easier to understand. This tip comes from Guy Kawasaki (http://blog.guykawasaki.com/2005/12/the_102030_rule.html), who’s blog points us to this PowerPoint competition.
Six Words Per Slide – So why use fewer words? Seth Godin, best selling author and marketing consultant, suggests no more than six words on a slide, EVER (http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2007/01/really_bad_powe.html ). He says that PowerPoint is meant to compliment you as the speaker and not become a replacement. Instead, he suggests using captivating images and catchy headers that will blend well with what you are saying. The fewer the words and the better the image, the more memorable it will be.
Cue-Cards & Handouts – If you limit the amount of words for each slide, then you should make yourself cue-cards to remember the details. You should also create a hand-out with important information on it for your listeners. We advise however that you don’t provide a hand-out until after the presentation or else people might leave early or become distracted by your notes.
- AccuConference Outlook Plug-in: Allows you to easily create a conference and send a calendar notice to your participants. Its free and is compatible with all conference call providers. http://www.accuconference.com/outlook/plugin/
- David Allen’s Productivity Plug-in: Lets you implement David Allen’s email productivity tips with the click of a button. http://gtdsupport.netcentrics.com/buy/
- Did-They-Read-It: Tells you if, when, where (geographically), and for how long your e-mails are read. (http://www.didtheyreadit.com/index.php?aff=2&affad=3
- Google Desktop Search: Search your emails (and files) quickly and easily. http://desktop.google.com/
- Spambayes: An effective anti-spam plugin. http://spambayes.sourceforge.net/windows.html
It’s relatively easy to hype up a one-time conference, but how do you keep your participants engaged for a weekly meeting? Try a weekly conference call contest!
For example, have your attendees share an innovative business idea. It could be a solution to a current problem, or a new idea to boost profit and sales. After everyone submits their idea, cast a vote and the winner will receive a gift card. In order to be eligible for the prize, the winner must attend next week’s meeting.
There are multiple ideas worth sharing. Submit your own weekly incentive to AccuConference and you can win a $25 restaurant gift card to Brinker Restaurants (www.brinker.com) Gift card can be redeemed at Chili’s, On-the-Boarder, and Macaroni Grill.
gethuman.com is a consumer movement to improve the quality of phone support in the US. They have created a list of helpful tips to access a live operator.
Here is a database you may also find helpful.
(And by the way, our average hold time is 8 seconds with NO automated menu.)