Like pretty much everyone, I do a lot of calls – conference calls and 1:1 calls with investors, developers, PR people, and all the rest.

But also like everyone, my memory is terrible and I rely on note-taking during calls to make sure I follow-up and do the things I commit to. Unfortunately, this comes at a steep price.

The Perils of Note-Taking on Calls

How many times have you heard someone say “hold on a sec, I’m just writing that down”? Minor as this may seem, the effects of this distraction can be significant.

There are literally hundreds of studies on multi-tasking during meetings and phone calls. The problem is that using notes for retention consumes a considerable amount of your brain power – or to use the scientific jargon, it has a high cognitive load.

And because our brains have a finite attention capacity, this means if you are taking notes, you are doing other things less well. You are less attentive to what’s being said, less able to absorb nuance in how it’s being said, and less capable of responding thoughtfully.

Put more practically, you exhibit less charisma when you take notes. At a minimum, you miss opportunities for levity through a well-timed joke. At worst you come off as distracted and uninteresting.

The Long Road to a Solution

But what about the practical problem of retaining what gets said in important meetings? How do you stay fully engaged with the person on the other end of the line without forgetting everything that was said immediately after the call?

I tried every option available:

  1. The obvious first option is to record calls, but anyone who’s tried this knows that actually finding relevant moments from the recorded audio later is way too time consuming.
  2. Another option is to send that recording to a transcription service, but that can costs $60/hour, and having a raw transcription is often less valuable than it might seem.
  3. I even tried recording calls and running them through an automated transcription service like Temi. While this service is awesome, it doesn’t accurately guess who is speaking, so it’s not well suited for phone calls.

I became determined to find a good alternative to call notes, and after countless hours researching transcription services, over a year of software development, and months of iteration with hundreds of real-world users, we finally hit our goal of improving call notes dramatically.

The solution is, a revolutionary call recording, transcription, and note-taking platform.

Though the technology behind it is advanced, using it is incredibly simple. Jog lets you dial anyone directly or you can use a dedicated dial-in number for conference calls. Any calls made through Jog are transcribed instantly, and the actual audio is synced with the text so you can find important moments quickly.

Instead of taking notes take notes, users simply “flag” important moments by tapping a keyboard shortcut, or setting up automatic flags to trigger when certain phrases are mentioned.

And it’s designed to slot into your existing workflow without a lot of change. Signup takes about 30 seconds (no sales reps required), and you can make a Jog call instantly.

Fully interactive transcripts are available minutes after the call and they look like this (hit the spacebar to start playback).

What It’s Like to Have Enlightened Phone Calls

Since I started using, my phone calls are remarkably more enjoyable and infinitely less stressful.

  • The mental energy I used to spend furiously writing notes now gets directed at having a more engaging conversation.
  • I no longer have anxiety about remembering action items, as I know they’re all going to be captured and available to use when I’m following up.
  • If I’m in the car or running through an airport, I don’t worry about stopping to jot down what I commit to.
  • Because I take a few seconds to skim previous calls before jumping on a new call, people are often shocked at how much I “remember” – about what we discussed previously or even just personal details like where they vacationed.

In short, my phone calls have changed dramatically for the better.

We’re excited to share this tool with the world. If you’d like to try, we’re offering a 14-day free trial for a limited time. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Categories: Call Notes

Sam Gaddis

Making sense of voice data. Founder of

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