augustus 23, 2023

7 Best Practices for Working Across Time Zones

For example, if you have a few messages you want to send, but notice it’s 9 p.m. In another employee’s timezone, you might either want to avoid sending til the morning or schedule an email. One-off videos and screen captures shouldn’t be the only place that teammates can turn for information and context in real time. Building an internal wiki that documents best practices and processes is critical, and there are a world of tools out there to help including Notion, Confluence, and even Google Drive.

It brings all communication into one shared workspace that can be accessed from a computer, a phone, or a tablet. Switch it up so each personality type has a chance to participate and have some fun. Plus you can play trivia games, host movie-watching parties, and take a virtual cooking class or cocktail mixing class together.

The Best Way to Work with a Global Team

It shows the current time in your own city, along with others in popular time zones around the world. At Zapier, we’ve formalized communications about what we’re working on with a Friday update post that lists our top priority for the week and what progress we made on it. Each of those live in Async—an in-house tool that gives everyone a set place to write anything they need to share with the entire team and forces us to “work in public.” In other words, communicate, and make sure everyone knows what you’re working on. No matter how independently you can work, and how hard you try to stay connected, you won’t be in the flow of what everyone’s doing unless you have a team chat tool.

  • If you travel the world frequently, knowing which a time zone you’re in relative to GMT is crucial—and it’s also important if you’re working with a distributed team.
  • One-off videos and screen captures shouldn’t be the only place that teammates can turn for information and context in real time.
  • The availability of technology that allows people to stay connected and collaborate from anywhere has allowed for the proliferation of remote work.
  • Adequate working time has “a great impact on workers’ income, well-being, and living conditions”, the ILO reports.
  • Teams is a popular addition that many companies have started to benefit from, especially as they needed to reach people in varying locations.

“Many of us tend to work crazy hours, which mitigates being in different time zones.” “That means that the remote person has a lot of autonomy and any problems that arise can be solved by either leaving messages on Slack/email or syncing up for a couple of hours one day.” If you’re always waiting for someone to tell you what to do next, and that someone’s asleep while you’re working, you’ll never get anything done. That’s why the most crucial part of building a remote team is hiring self-directed workers—”managers of one,” as the Basecamp team calls them in their book Rework.

Pro: Freedom of time and place boosts productivity

Naturally, organizations jumped at the opportunity to select from a global pool of talent which is, essentially, the key factor that led to the formation of teams that span across different time zones. Still, as much as it might be pretty seamless for a tech company to adjust their operations to working remotely in a different time zone, for some industries and teams, this practice is simply not viable. Let’s get a more detailed look at what types of teams are leading the way in working across time zones.

  • Create a Countdown Timer that counts down in seconds, minutes, hours and days to any date, with time zone support.
  • In addition to following those best practices, it’s good to take inventory of the tools, apps, and software programs available to the team.
  • When you meet frequently with the same people, take time to understand when they work remotely.

Or, this could mean that you develop a virtual team meeting schedule that fits within everyone’s active work hours — rather than making some teammates call in late at night or in the early morning. That way, they’ll be able to keep the project moving along once they’re back online, or have enough information to know a face-to-face meeting is needed. Don’t forget that just because meetings are in a different time zone doesn’t mean your distributed employees shouldn’t get the same perks as employees in HQ.

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