How to Work Across Time Zones as a Remote Team

Work Across Time Zones as a Remote Team

Managing time is very necessary and is one of the crucial keys to get success. The pandemic has introduced us to the newest phase ‘remote world,’ and now a lot of work or teams are working in remote zones. It has benefits like an employee can be able to work from any place, but if you are working in a remote team, there are some difficulties that you have to handle due to time zones.

You must put in the work and cultivate strong relationships across time zones if you want to collaborate successfully with a remote staff. This isn't easy, but it will be worthwhile. Here are some suggestions that will help you for getting and managing good global teamwork.

1. Understand the concept of time zones

Understand the concept of time zones

Understand the concept of time zones

You must first comprehend and understand the clear idea of time zones. Time zones are areas of the world where people experience the same number of daylight hours throughout the year. Getting synchronized with the team is a very important part of managing it. This means that even if one team member is working while another is sleeping, they can still successfully communicate and work together unless this pattern repeats itself for several weeks.

You need to understand that the usual 9 to 5 workday is no longer the norm for you when you are in a remote team. Some employees may prefer to get an early start to get things done before the day starts, while others prefer to start later but work into the evening. Make an effort to comprehend when people who you encounter commonly work remotely.

You will need to converse asynchronously most of the time if your staff is spread out across multiple time zones.

2. Make as much use of async communication as you can

Make as much use of async communication as you can

Make as much use of async communication as you can.

Asynchronous communication refers to collaborating with others while avoiding face-to-face interaction, such as when communicating by email, online chat, or transmitting Loom movies as video messages. Additionally, it implies that you're sometimes speaking at different moments.

Learning to communicate async effectively will be the key to your success when working in a dispersed environment. However, if you set up your team and plan your projects around everyone's time zones, it can be a different way. Meanwhile, it is vital to promote strong, consistent documentation in asynchronous office platforms like Notion, Google Drive, Slack and project management choices like Asana or Trello. Team members will be able to stay caught up and remember important work details because they may take in all the knowledge they require at their own pace.

3. Schedule meetings at the appropriate time

Schedule meetings at the appropriate time

Schedule meetings at the appropriate time

In simple words, it is like managing day and night shifts together at the same time. It can be challenging to schedule meetings at a time that works for everyone when there is such a difference in some time zones. For instance, when it's 10 p.m. in Melbourne, Australia, it's 8 a.m. in New York. So, for teams that work with individuals from two or three different time zones who are all close to one another. However, when dealing with a global workforce becomes more challenging.

So, make it a practice to schedule team meetings when it will be most convenient for every team member. By doing this, you'll ensure that your coworkers will be able to stay up early and stay up late to attend and participate in talks.

4. Don't feel your team that you are not together

Don't feel your team that you are not together

You must work with your team as though it were a single, centralized office to function more productively with remote teams. Even though it might not be feasible, this is the attitude you should take in order to manage your time and obligations.

Each team member should work in a peaceful environment. They can choose any place like cafeteria or home where they can focus or concentrate properly. If your coworkers are nearby, consider having them share a workstation so they may easily collaborate on projects as needed.

5. Be appropriate in sending work

Be appropriate in sending work

Respect the time zone limits and ideal work hours established by you and your team. This implies that you first assess the task's urgency before sending it to a global teammate if you require something from them. So, you may create a virtual team meeting schedule that falls inside everyone's active work hours.

Your international coworkers may be happier at work, experience less stress, or find it simpler to tune out of business communication outside their regular working hours if they feel like their schedule is respected. Ultimately, these factors will improve team performance, productivity, and job retention.

6. Know and use more virtual tools and virtual meet-ups

Know and use more virtual tools and virtual meet-ups

Many teams are no longer necessary to work in the same place or at the same time, thanks to the abundance of technology at our disposal. So, at that time, you can use tools like task management software, instant messaging applications, and progress trackers to enable everyone in your team to strategize and update their progress at various times of the day to keep your team on task and working effectively throughout the globe. These tools enable global employees to remain in sync regarding which aspects of a project have been finished, in addition to enabling people to work on the same projects in various time zones.

Furthermore, when team members work in different offices or time zones, it is more challenging to get to know them. Fortunately, setting up online gatherings can promote team building among remote professionals.

7. Be patient

Be patient

As the time zones are different, it may be possible that the time you are sending an unscheduled message to your team mate and at that moment they are not available or may took some time for reverting back to it. As a result, colleagues who work in various time zones want to avoid receiving a barrage of emails and messages while they wake up or fall asleep. So, many global workers will try to tune out by muting their instant message notifications or shutting off their work devices when the day's work is complete.

It doesn't foster the best culture to expect your teammates to be "always-on," and it may even make them feel disrespected. Reduce the number of messages you send after hours, and be patient if you are waiting to hear back immediately to avoid this. A good teammate will probably respond to you when they start working the following day.

Conclusion

Since there aren't 24 equally spaced time zones on earth, it can be a little trickier for remote employees to keep track of the schedules of their team members. We frequently have to work at odd hours when we collaborate with folks from around the world. With worldwide teams, there is frequently no other option. So, it is necessary to work at irregular hours with a lot of sync to manage our team working under different time zones.

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