Not too long ago, I was trying to convince a junior staff member to always script his meetings. He felt that the meeting should develop on its own. That an organic and free technique was fairer and more likely to create a team spirit. I was unable to convince him and ultimately let him go off and try it.
Of course he failed spectacularly.
But along the way, I had to answer the question of why running a scripted meeting is the best way to great number a conference call? Or any other meeting for that matter.
First off, let’s clarify what we average by a scripted meeting. At the lowest level, a scripted meeting is any meeting with an agenda. At the highest — and the way I was trained as a facilitator — every interaction is expected and scripted. In practice, I prefer to think of a scripted meeting as somewhere in between. Predicting every different is a waste of energy. however, the without of agenda almost always sinks a meeting as my young friend found out.
And of course, a teleseminar or conference call imposes its own requirements on the planning course of action.
So let’s set the stage here.
Teleseminars are by their character more formal than a generic coaching call. Coaching style conference calls can seem to be anywhere from formal to informal. But generally they are less formal than a teleseminar.
Scripts in their turn can be informal and simple — simply listing the subject areas or headings of what is to be covered. They can also be very formal literally predicting what will be said, what will be the reaction and what will be the response. Most scripts are somewhere between… perhaps listing details for the alternatives (a teleseminar and what to say if there’s no response) but subject areas for other items.
I’m going to focus on this latter group. They have the least amount of scripting for a successful conference call or teleseminar. They also are the most likely version for someone to try to get by without scripting.
So why is running a scripted meeting is the best way to great number a conference call?
Here are the three top reasons in my opinion.
1. It allows you to run a conference call by yourself.
What if you ran a meeting and no one came? Well, with conference calls that happens. already worse sometimes people arrive in the middle of the call. You don’t want them to be left thinking the call was cancelled. A script allows you to go ahead without worrying about participation.
2. People are often afraid to speak up.
Everyone gets caught by the dreaded “does no one have a question?” response. It’s frequently caused by an audience who is a little embarrassed to ask questions. Scripting your meeting allows you to conquer this issue.
3. It avoids the dreaded “Now where was I” meeting.
Sometimes you’re going to pick up on a thread and go off into the wild blue with it. That’s fine. As long as you remember where you are going. Having a script helps you to get back on track and continue from where you were.