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Managing a Team Across 5 Time Zones


It will also ensure that you’re available to your international department without needing to stay up all hours of the day. To allow more space for effective communication to happen, companies working across time zones need working remotely in a different time zone to rethink traditional channels of communication, such as email, and adopt more flexible solutions and methods. Asynchronous communication has emerged as a preferred method for organizations operating across time zones.

best practices for working across time zones

One of the first and easiest things you can do to make asynchronous communication smooth is to set your working hours, and to make those hours easily discoverable to your teammates. Some apps like Google Calendars even serve a warning if you inadvertently try to book something outside of working hours. Determine which meetings are work-related and mandatory and which are more cultural or social.

Tips for Hosting a Virtual Brainstorm, According to HubSpot Marketing Managers

When you’re working remotely or in a different location from other team members, you can’t easily turn to them, ask a question, or make conversation. This can make it hard to communicate and develop a relationship with your colleagues. Then, when you’re ready to schedule the email, click the arrow on the send icon for the „Schedule message” option.

For synchronous, everyone-at-the-same-time communication, we use Slack for written chats and Zoom for video chats. Using these tools to keep time zones top of mind makes sure that all team members have an equal opportunity to work smarter, not harder, and that they can engage or disengage when they want. Possibly the simplest tip of all is also the one that can be the hardest to keep top of mind.

Find Your Remote Job

Consider making a record of all culture-specific holidays to make sure no meetings or group work sessions are scheduled around those dates. Another key feature of such team chat apps is the pin option as it helps keep the important documents top of mind and easily accessible. While the complexity of working across time zones can’t be denied, the undeniable benefits of remote work, such as access to global talent and extended operational hours, make it a compelling choice. As much as it’s important to keep a strong bond between remote coworkers through continual communication and real-time collaboration, there’s also a strong case for the asynchronous, no-distraction work.

Whether your meeting is in work time or after hours, it’s important to be mindful about scheduling these events. With 24% of remote workers reporting feelings of loneliness, being mindful of inclusion can go a long way to keeping your colleagues invested and happy at work. While remote work has its benefits, time zone differences can make the employee management difficult without the right tools and processes in place. Therefore, team members working across borders and time zones may become the norm soon. Utilizing a document of the team’s typical hours of availability and an actively updated and openly accessible calendar eliminates the need for several back and forth messages asking “what time works best for you? ” Within these documents, remote team members can specify hours for deep work, family obligations, and learning opportunities; keep firm boundaries around their work hours; and designate days free from team meetings.