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Working Across Multiple Time Zones: Tools and Strategies

With the rise of remote work, more employers are benefiting from hiring workers across the world. This article will explore an alternative to the 9-5 schedule, namely, the DuPont shift schedule. We will highlight how it works, its pros and cons, and ways to implement it. Cisco WebEx is another video conferencing software platform that is popular. The software can follow the speaker to make it easier to follow along with a conversation. By organizing ahead of time, you’ll be able to maximize the time of all of the attendees no matter where they are located and it will help keep the engagement levels up during the meeting.

Working remotely — and happily — in the U.P. – Second Wave Michigan

Working remotely — and happily — in the U.P..

Posted: Wed, 15 Nov 2023 08:00:00 GMT [source]

Settings include public and private channels so you can have some fun open group conversations and more project-specific channels. 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.

Benefits of working across time zones

People communicate differently when in a group setting like a video conference and it can improve the overall team dynamics. If a phone call or video conference is necessary, try rotating the schedules so everyone gets a turn to take calls late-night or off-hours. Some people might have to be available for an 11 PM call once a month, but it’s way easier to be onboard for that if they know that everyone will take a turn with the weird hours.

  • However, we can’t deny the fact that it also comes with its own set of challenges too.
  • Having time in the middle of the day to go for swims or meet friends for a bite to eat.
  • Consider meeting times that fall in the middle of the day so they fall within everyone’s normal work hours.

The difficulties of managing different time zones, language barriers, and cultural differences can be frustrating. Plus, you need to understand the differences between synchronous and asynchronous communication, and when to use each. The actual time difference between co-workers is a significant barrier to effective real-time communication. If remote employees don’t have overlap in work hours, there can be a lag between a question being asked and answered. With the ever-increasing demand for a workforce that can work across time zones, a lot of pressure has also emanated from the failure to maintain a work-life balance.

A Guide to Working Remotely in Different Time Zones

The tool shown above is one that our awesome developer Dan made just for Buffer, and it helps us all a ton to know what’s going on with any teammate at a glance. (If you’re a developer yourself and want something similar, he’s made the code available on Github). There are simply too many project management apps available on the market to pick just one to feature. Each has distinct features and benefits, so you can compare a few to see what fits your needs best. Freaking Nomads is the online publication and community for all things digital nomad. It provides guides, tips, inspiration and resources to help people live and work anywhere in the world.

working remotely in a different time zone

If you are working with someone in the US, you will have the benefit of getting a head start on your day. By the time your clients wake up, you will have finished most of your work and still have three hours left to sync up with them. If you want to interact and work with the whole world, there is pretty much no better time zone than those of Central European Time and Central African Time. Neighbors to Asia on one side, and the Americas on the other, these time zones are in a prime position. Now that we have all these basics covered, we can dive into details about different time zones to help you choose which is best suited for you. We will mostly reference the US, Canada and the UK when talking about time zones around the globe.

Need help building your global team?

By being able to see who is working, people can save time not reaching out to those who aren’t available and adding more to inboxes. There are lots of color options, so you can assign each employee or team a certain color on the calendar. Team-building activities are so important to building up a team’s morale and helping them work better together. You could schedule one week each year for everyone to be in one spot together. You can mix in work meetings and training sessions with some fun activities that just focus on team bonding.

Also, show empathy and understanding towards your team members or remote employees, as they may be making similar sacrifices to accommodate your needs. Maintaining open lines of communication and a positive attitude can go a long way in building strong relationships with your colleagues. Now that we learned the challenges of working remotely through a different time zone let’s see a few tactics that you can adopt to master time zone management. When you’re working remotely in a different time zone, it can be easy to blur the lines between work and home life. To maintain a healthy work-life balance, you should make sure to establish clear boundaries and always prioritize self-care. Adjusting your work hours or finding a compromise that works for everyone involved may be necessary to navigate scheduling conflicts.

To do it efficiently, you must pick and set up the proper communication channel like MS Teams or Slack and identify what type of information should be disclosed and when. Furthermore, it will help if you make meeting rules that say what format should be used. Some of the most well-known apps are Asana, ClickUp, Monday.com, Trello, Zoho, and Teamwork. To see which one has options that are appealing to you and your team, compare the pricing structures, the number of users allowed, and available features. Most options have a free trial that will allow your team to try it out and see what they think.

  • It’s a great way to share time off and any important dates with the whole group without revealing your entire personal calendar.
  • An inside look at the meeting ground rules used internally by Fellow.app, the top-rated meeting productivity software company.
  • It’s more of a subliminal focus mechanism, like putting on armor or gearing up to get my head in the game.
  • Likewise, you should also encourage colleagues to communicate when they’re running into timezone blockers.

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