Survey Reveals Most Annoying Conference Call Behaviors



Nowadays, conference calls are commonplace in the business community. Although advantageous for bringing people from widespread locations together, such conferences can reflect badly upon a business if proper etiquette is ignored, warns Victory State Bank, Staten Island’s only community-based commercial bank.

The bank brings to light a recent OfficeTeam survey of workers that underscored annoying behavior on conference calls. OfficeTeam specializes in the temporary placement of highly skilled office and administrative support professionals

When joining conference calls, employees should be careful about "phoning it in" if they want to avoid irritating their colleagues, the research suggests. More than one-third (37 percent) of workers surveyed said multiple people talking at the same time is the most distracting behavior on conference calls, followed by excessive background noise (24 percent).

Workers were asked, "Which one of the following, if any, is the most distracting or annoying thing when it comes to conference calls?"

Their responses:

§  Multiple people talking at the same time: 37 percent

§  Excessive background noise: 24 percent

§  Attendees not paying attention: 9 percent

§  Attendees putting the call on hold (and prompting hold music): 7 percent

§  Attendees thinking they're talking when they're on mute: 7 percent

§  Other: 1 percent

§  None of these: 2 percent

§  Don't participate in conference calls: 12 percent

(Note: Responses do not total 100 percent due to rounding.)

OfficeTeam identifies five types of conference call etiquette offenders and provides tips to help workers avoid these labels:

1) The Late Arriver disrupts the flow when he or she joins after the call has already kicked off. Have the dial-in details ready a few minutes prior to the start time so you won't be scrambling at the last moment. If you anticipate being tardy, let the host know.

2) The Noisemaker causes a commotion with loud typing, a barking dog or other sounds that can be heard in the background. Find a quiet location for calls and mute the line when you're not speaking. Just remember to unmute yourself when you have something to say.

3) The Multitasker is too busy eating, checking email or reading a report to pay attention to the discussion at hand. Put your other work away and eliminate potential distractions so you can actively participate in the conversation.  

4) The Tech Transgressor is prone to technology faux pas, whether it's misusing phone access codes or a headset, or accidentally prompting music by putting the line on hold. Familiarize yourself with conference call systems and equipment before dialing. 

5) The Scene-Stealer is known to interrupt or monopolize discussions. Contribute your thoughts, but don't forget to share the floor. Since there may be audio delays on the phone, wait a beat before speaking to avoid talking over someone.

About the Research

The survey of office workers was developed by OfficeTeam and conducted by an independent research firm. It includes responses from more than 1,000 U.S. workers 18 years of age or older and employed in office environments. 



About Victory State Bank

VSB Bancorp, Inc. (OTCQX: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank. For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online at


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