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How to collaborate across time zones

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https://zapier.com/blog/how-to-work-asynchronously/

zapier.com

How to collaborate across time zones
My team is spread across four states and three time zones. People often ask me how we find good times to meet. My answer: it's not easy, but it's also rarely necessary. Working remotely, especially when your team is distributed across the globe, means working asynchronously. And it's a skill....

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Collaboration

Working remotely, especially when your team is distributed across the globe, means working asynchronously, that is, across time zones. This is a skill.

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Ask good questions

Don't assume that others know what you're talking about. Provide some clarifying context. Then, re-read your question, trying to identify the places that you make assu...

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Work with transparency

  • Change your settings in Google Drive and allow anyone in your organization to edit new files. Then someone can make a change before they lose their train of thought. You can always re...

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Overcommunicate

Small talk allows people to stay in the loop with work projects. Posting updates about what you're working on allows for better alignment with the rest of your team. 

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Default to action

If you are in Denver and the person you're asking is in Perth, waiting for approval or 100 percent certainty will slow every decision down by one day.

As long as there's no irreversib...

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Building Rapport Remotely

To better build rapport and counter isolation do the following:

  • smile, tilt your chin lower so you're not looking down on them, and slow down your speech during your vid...

Relying On Text The Right Way

Voice and video calls can help you feel more in touch with your team and avoid the issues of asynchronous communication like time lags or misunderstandings.

However, you'll likely spend a lot of your day communicating via text as it’s a good way to interact without interrupting their work. So you need to be able to get your point across clearly and simply, show empathy and understanding, and be efficient to avoid wasted time.

Staying Up To Date

Remote workers can feel overwhelmed by the amount of text they have to process. So finding ways to keep on top of what's going on is imperative for communicating efficiently with others.

Create archive lists and CC irrelevant emails to them, so you can save and share them without flooding non-involved people. 

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Suddenly Working From Home

There is a sudden shift towards remote working in workspaces all across the world, with many people abruptly thrust towards it without warning.

Experts share a few tips on how to transition ...

Mimic Your Office Culture

For many of us, the office becomes a fun place due to a sense of community, purpose and fun interactions that make up an office day. To try and mimic your office culture virtually:

  1. Set up Slack channels for water cooler conversation
  2. Schedule virtual movie days, when the same movie is streamed with the chat option on.
  3. Try to recreate virtual versions of what employees miss the most in office, like a coffee break, for instance.

Being Social While Remotely Working

Being social at office lubricates official conversations and the work itself. The more we spend time with colleagues having non-essential chatter, the easier our work becomes with them.

It helps to be creative and infuse fun into a virtual interaction. Any official conversation, like a manager meeting his subordinates in a one-on-one meeting, can start by asking about the person’s life (something unrelated to work), so that a connection is built.

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Assembling the Team

... that's capable of executing in a remote setup:

  • Hire doers: they will get stuff done even if they are working from a secluded island.
  • Hire people you can trust....

Software/Tools

In a remote team, you'll need the right tools to make sure everyone stays on the same page and can continue to execute without a physical person standing next to them.

You likely will need a tool in certain categories like group chat and video conferencing to make remote successful.

Processes

Good processes let you get work done in the absence of all else. They provide structure and direction for getting things done.

A few examples from Zapier:

  • Weekly Hangouts;
  • Weekly One-on-Ones;
  • Bring the team together 2 times/year somewhere cool;
  • Automate anything that can be automated.