In today's digital age, the traditional office setup is rapidly evolving. With the rise of remote work, teams are now spread across different continents, operating in various time zones. Thanks to the 100% remote model, the WorkFlex Team is working together from 8 different time zones. We love the flexibility and freedom that we get through working from anywhere and anytime.
This new work arrangement brings, however, its own set of challenges, but with the right strategies, teams can collaborate seamlessly and efficiently. Here are seven tips for working asynchronously from 10 or more different countries from our WorkFlex Co-Founder Patrick Koch:
1. Leverage Asynchronous Tools:
Tools like Teams Messages and Vidyard/Loom videos are invaluable for teams spread across different time zones. These tools allow team members to communicate and collaborate at their own pace, without the need for real-time interaction. People can watch the videos whenever it works best for them, and not when a meeting is scheduled. Whether it's a quick message update or a detailed video explanation, asynchronous tools ensure that everyone stays informed and connected. On top of that, everything is written down or recorded, so that no information gets lost.
2. Set Clear Goals and Priorities:
With team members working at different hours, it’s crucial to have clear goals and priorities – may it be in the form of OKRs, Deadlines, Asana To-Do’s. This ensures that tasks don't fall behind and deadlines are consistently met. Regular check-ins and updates can help in keeping everyone aligned and focused on the bigger picture.
Communication is harder when working remotely. Therefore, when working asynchronously, it's always better to communicate too much rather than too little. Clear updates, feedback sessions, and open channels of communication ensure that all team members are on the same page, reducing the chances of misunderstandings or missing information. Further, create spaces where you can say “Thank You”, which is especially important in remote settings.
4. Block Out Uninterrupted Work Times:
With the potential for constant notifications and updates, it's essential to have periods of focused, uninterrupted work. Blocking out specific times in your calendar can help you concentrate on tasks without distractions, making you more productive and efficient.
5. Trust Over Control:
Lastly, even though loss of control might be difficult and scary sometimes as a manager but learn to delegate! Trusting your team members is crucial in an asynchronous work environment. Instead of monitoring their hours, focus on the quality and timeliness of their work. You will see the effects anyway in their performance! Empowering team members with trust fosters a positive work culture and encourages responsibility and accountability.
6. Centralize Information with Digital Tools:
Having a central repository for information and documents is vital for teams working from different locations. Tools like cloud storage and document management systems ensure that everyone has access to the information they need, anytime and anywhere. Make sure that this is also explained in the Onboarding, so every new joiner knows where to look.
7. Stay Flexible and Adaptable:
Working with a diverse team from various countries means encountering different cultures, work habits, and challenges. Being flexible and open to change is essential to navigate these differences and create a harmonious work environment. This also helps to work through varying national and religious holidays.
In conclusion, working asynchronously from multiple countries might seem daunting, but with the right strategies and tools, it can lead to a highly productive and cohesive team. We at WorkFlex, could never live without it. We love to have such as international team with people working from Germany, USA, South Africa, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Latvia, Egypt, Netherlands, or many more countries when we include the workation destinations of our team.
There is nothing more to say than:
Embrace the challenges, celebrate the diversity, and watch your team thrive in this new age of work! 🚀