Co-working spaces have become quite popular in recent years as the price of private office space continues to rise. Small business owners and freelancers alike utilize these community spaces to get work done, provide a professional place for meeting in-person with clients and other professionals, and to save money on personal office space costs.
Here we’ll discuss five tips for hosting conference calls from co-working spaces. We’ll cover everything from using the designated meeting room to choosing a time when few people are using the space, so as to minimize your interruption of your co-workers’ day and maximize the effectiveness of your conference calls.
1. Use The Designated Meeting Room
Many co-working spaces include a designated meeting room designed for conference calls or in-person meetings. This private, quiet space is perfect for hosting calls when the co-working space is full of people. You don’t want to be the guy interrupting everyone with your call, so sign up ahead of time for the meeting room so you can minimize your noise.
Some co-working spaces will even include a phone you can use, or you can use free web conferencing software to get the job done. Be sure you’re adhering to any policies regarding the meeting room that your co-working space has in place. You may only have access to the room for a certain amount of time each day or each month, and more time might cost you some extra cash.
Above all else, respect the meeting room as if it were your own office. Remember that you’re sharing the tools and space with other people, so you don’t want to leave it a mess or trample on anyone’s time.
2. Let Everyone Know When You’re Hosting
If your co-working space doesn’t have a designated meeting room, you’ll want to make sure you let everyone else know when you’re hosting your meeting. While you can’t exactly expect everyone else to temper their noise levels to your needs, a little courtesy can go a long way in a co-working space.
Letting people know you’re going to be hosting a call lets them know to expect you’ll be talking during that block of time on the meeting day, and if you’re sharing the space with courteous professionals, they’ll likely be as quiet as possible for you.
You can also choose to leave the space altogether and go somewhere else quiet. Local libraries often have conference rooms that you can book ahead of time, and you won’t have to worry about anyone bothering you or intruding on someone else’s concentration.
3. Let Callers Know You’re in a Co-Working Space
It’s also important to let your call participants know that you’re calling from a co-working space. Otherwise, they might be confused by all of the background noise. This helps them understand what to expect on your end of things. Transparency is always important in business, especially if you’re working with new or prospective clients.
Simply provide a disclaimer before your call begins. Again, if you think you can’t manage the call in the co-working space, choose somewhere else that’s quiet. You wouldn’t want to upset a co-worker or client with excess noise.
4. Choose a Time When Few People Are In The Office
Once you’ve shared a co-working space for long enough, you tend to get a feel for who’s there and when. The best way to host conference calls in this environment is to host them when no one or very few people are there. This will reduce the background noise on your call and the number of people you might be affecting by talking on the phone.
Late at night or very early in the morning are probably the best times to host, depending on your co-working space and the needs of your caller(s). You could also choose a lunch hour when everyone has left the space to get something to eat or wait until after usual hours and host between 5-9 pm. Again, this all depends on the needs and availability of your caller(s).
5. Don’t Be Loud
While this tip shouldn’t even have to be stated, we’re going to put it out there anyway. Don’t be loud with your conference call. Nothing is more obnoxious than someone who can’t control their volume when they’re on a call. You don’t want to be the person in the co-working space that makes everyone dread coming in during your conference calls.
Be courteous to everyone else’s space and concentration. Remember, the co-working space isn’t a personal office.
The bottom line of hosting calls in a co-working space is courtesy. Remember that you’re not the only person using the space, and that your noise levels can affect other peoples’ work in a negative way.