Posted by: kerrywills | June 10, 2011

“Hello, who is on the call?”

Every time I get on a conference call I wonder about proper etiquette. Do I announce my name immediately or do I wait to be asked “who joined?” Conversely when I run a call, should I always who “who joined” when I hear a beep?

Beep....beep....beep...hello? who joined? beep....beep

I think the answer is that it depends on the situation. Here are some scenarios…

  • “Normal Call” – For most situations it is advised to dial in on time and announce your name
  • “Stealth Mode” – This is when I want to hear the conversation but not necessarily let people know I am on.  This way I can get a real sense of what is going on. I usually use this for projects and activities beyond my immediate scope but that I want to learn more about. The trick here is dialing in exactly on time so you are one of many beeps. Also the trick is not to interject even if people are talking about you, as then you lose your “stealth”
  • “Late Joiner” – If someone joins late then it is probably best not to interrupt the call to introduce yourself. This also prevents everyone from knowing you were the late person. By the way, if you do call in late don’t make people repeat information or ask who is on the call – you missed your chance by dialing in late.

What do others think about announcing yourself or additional scenarios….hello? who is reading this blog, please announce yourselves…



  1. If I initiated the call, I begin with, “Hi, this is Dave. Who joined us?” I check off the names on my copy of the agenda / meeting invitation, and repeat on each beep. Once we have a quorum, I read off the list of names, ask if I missed anyone, and we begin. If someone else joins, I note the beep, and at the next natural pause, I ask, “Who else joined us?”

    I don’t mind lurkers, but some folks are inhibited by the thought of anonymous people listening in. I think it’s polite to announce, “This is Bob, but I’m just lurking.” However, it may defeat the purpose of the lurk – your mileage may vary.

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