Saying stupid things in con calls

Call going perfectly, sounding very authoritative and in control and at just at the end when it's tying up loose ends for next steps I make a minor mistake and nervously correct it but end that correction with "obvs"

The QC, partner and solicitor in the room at the other end are clearly now raising eyebrows and smirking at my terrible faux pas.

Kill me now. 

there is nothing wrong with obvs

if they think it is amusing it is because they are autisty wrinklos

Could be worse, you could have said “lolz”.

Yes I have done this in a meeting.  Oops.

I've got one dude who sits quietly listening and then jumps in like a ring leader with "ok, what I'm hearing is .... " and the oversimplifies the issue and gets it wrong. 

Always leading to someone saying "ok, thanks Jim - that's helpful [NOT FUCKING HELPFUL], we're more of the view that... [correct summary]".

Yes, JellyM, that happens in con calls with banks a LOT. 


The best thing that's ever happened to me on a con call was a party dialling in late, with the announcement stating:   "'...and let's see if this fucking thing actually works' HAS JOINED THE CALL.  *BEEEEEP*".   Then a sheepish voice saying "Yeah, sorry about that.  Clearly I don't get on well with technology.".


I used to use BT but when I changed jobs we used bluejeans for video cons and it was clear who didn’t get the technology because there was no picture but repeated swearing in Spanish.  She didn’t realise that we could all hear it.  My Spanish isn’t great but the guy I was in our boardroom was fluent and he was absolutely dying of laughter but trying not to show it because we were already on video and hooked up to all of our other European offices.....

Obviously would be fine. Obvs just made me sound like a kid.

There was already a suggestion that they thought I was the monkey rather than the organ grinder earlier today when they asked to speak to my colleague about strategy, and then a rather beautiful moment when it dawned on QC that I was not the monkey and actually not only could advise on strategy but also go into quite a lot of detail as to what underpinned it and very eloquently so if I don't say so myself. And my strategy was ultimately a resounding success.

But then I said obvs in an apologetic faux laugh style like a fvcking dick.

if you think you feel bad, think how the qc feels. he made a dick of himself in front of the client who pays the bills.  and to top it all a client who says "obvs". THE HUMILIATION.


Which QC was it Meh? I’ve worked with one who used to think he should only converse with Partners. He is a bell end

If you're the client, who cares?

You should have added: "get with the programme, grandad" and blown a party whistle in his face

I care because I'm in a senior position but look young and it feels like people regularly underestimate me as a result.

I care because I'm in a senior position but look young and it feels like people regularly underestimate me as a result.

Surely this works in your favour if they underestimate you when you surprise them by massively over delivering / over performing?

You’re also female and I’m sorry to be of the opinion that there is a large section of people in both the legal and financial world who need to realise that yes, women can in fact be senior, well informed and well educated professionals.

Have seen this many times over in the past and have no doubt in my mind that there remains a fight to get full recognition.

True, but still irritating in meetings, IG. 


I once went to a con with a (hoary, old skool) QC to which we took a vac student, who we introduced amd who then promptly stuck his hand out and greeted the QC with a cheerful "Alright, mate?". 


QC just looked at the vac student's hand like it was a festering turd and said "I am not your mate, sonny.".  Genius.

He was, but it was such an awesome display of pomposity that it made me laugh. Plus it was hugely presumptuous/oikey of the stude to call an older, well-to-do person "mate".  Would you do that to your senior partner?  Are children not taught proper modes of address, propriety or manners anymore?

I think that it's a shame that people use christian names straightaway rather than Mr / Mrs / Miss / Ms 

Are children not taught proper modes of address, propriety or manners anymore?

Dude. Chill. and step into the 21st century. The vac student was polite and indicated an intention to be mates, I see nothing wrong with that. He was met by an uppity pompous idiot. Probably a good intro to the legal profession tbf.

No, the vac student was familiar and casual in his approach.  It's not a bloke you just met in the pub, ffs, it's a senior individual in a professional environment.  I'm with Judy on this one.

Yeh. Me too. Just being cutting edge and controversial

Martian Law26 Sep 19 16:02

Which QC was it Meh? I’ve worked with one who used to think he should only converse with Partners. He is a bell end


Only one? Wow.

On the other hand, I've never met a bazza who refused to shake hands, whatever their level. Possibly thats because my lot are personal injury/ crime.

traditionally members of the bar don't shake hands with each other.

I do remember, when I was an NQ, about 20 years ago, a QB trying to get with the office speak at the time when he came to a con at our office and said "ah, good morning, young man: what do you hope to achieve today?"

I dunno... cadge some biscuits?

Or the time my (sadly deceased) senior partner once asked how my fledgling Road Traffic Offence (due care, etc) cases were going. "Have you had any fights yet?" he enquired. I thought about it and said "No, but I did see security jump on some other people at the mags court the other day, and things got pretty hairy at an inquest, but I'd not got involved myself". 

He looked at me strangely. 

15 minutes later it struck me: He was asking if I had defended any charges, as opposed to presenting plea and mitigation.


I did one conference where some bright spark decided to see what the system would let you get away with so we had the announcement of "Vlad the Impaler has joined the call".

he also did a mean line in old school put downs.

One claims had a bundle of... I dunno... 20 lever arches? 

He has QC in his office.

I get a call from his secretary. "Can you come down please?"

I rock up at her desk. "Yo. Wassup?"

"He wanted you to see this".

Folder 11. Page 42. It was upside down.

"That's all. He just wanted you to see it. Off you trot."
It's hardly in the Lord Pannick Bundlegate league, but that was me well and truly told.

I was once on a con call where the clients had a major row while we all sat there on mute pissing ourselves laughing for the 10 minutes it lasted. 

It is 2003.

Global concall (2000 people): Bing bing. Bing bing bing. Bing bing bing bing bing (etc) [bing = person joining concall]

Unknown voice on call: "What's that binging noise?"

Boringgeek: [thinking he is on mute and addressing a small group in room] "F**king moron. Obviously it's our CEO hammering a fruit machine in a desperate attempt to generate revenue ha ha ha ha lolz."

CEO: "Who said that?"


I miss con call roulette. Our dealerboards didn't have a lot mute button, so you pressed the mute button very fast repeatedly so you didn't know if you were muted or not then shouted "CUNT" into the headset.

I think “obvs” is fine (and I have said “lol” many times in a professional environment, too) but the OP makes a valid point when she says she wants to control the impression she makes, and certain manners of speech, while not objectively inappropriate, may be inconsistent with her intended style.

On the other hand, the QC, not the vac student, is is the prick in BadmanRofer’s story. I’d happily call our senior partner “mate”, and probably have done.

You're missing the point. 

Your senior partner is only a solicitor. 

The QC was so, so much more than that. 

One of the good things about being a self confident and powerfully built male with a pleasing baritone voice and considerable gravitas is you can pretty much choose whatever words you like. I have called people “homie” in meetings before now.

I don’t think I would call any of our board of directors mate but I do call them by first name.

i would call my line manager and people in my team ‘mate’ though.

With the board it would be a bit different just because they’re so senior to me in a large organisation. Also I would generally say I’m quite over familiar and relaxed at work. ‘Mate’ would be too much for v senior people though - even for me!

... Dux? How did you get perfectlys log in details? 

I think once you’ve been in a professional services organisation a few years, a sort of offhand joviality is expected, and it would be weirder not to indulge in it tbh

Compulsory joviality is not as bad as overfamiliarity tbf

’No, I’m not your “mate”. Does your wife know you have others?”

 I have called people “homie” in meetings before now.

That’s proper David Brent is that

The problem with avoiding humour that some might find awkward and using “credible” middle of the road language all the time at work is that, to do that, you have to act all the time. You have to constantly be acting the part of an artificially serious individual who has no character flaws and is always the average of all good colleagues ever. You’d go mad trying that for long. Best just to give occasional vent to your eccentricities and suck it up if some people think you’re weird. If you’re weird then most people are weird, probably.

Doubling down on the Brent.

Like it.

"Oooh. You're hard."


That's why people at the Bar tend to go mental. You can't ever tell the judge what you really think, no matter how much you would like to.

I don't call anyone "mate" as it's really rather naff.

My jnr once called me dad or daddy on an all parties con call. I was only like 3 years older than her 


Awkward but LOL