Last Updated: Jan 5, 2017
Internet has made it possible for es to sell globally, but that creates challenge of dealing with in different time zones. Here are seven tips to make it easier to communicate with and serve in or parts of country or world. 

Working with clients and in different time zones is challenging. It’s also a change in how you think. Unless you have experience in national and international , thinking in terms of time zones, cultures, and non-standard work hours will take time to deal with and get used to. Here are a few tips to help.

1. Use Your Phone
Sometimes most useful features of your phone are tucked away and easy to forget about. One of those is world clock. If you have clients in multiple localities around world, each of m into world clock on your phone until time zone differences become automatic.

When time changes in United States, that time zone app will become important again as you figure out who changed and who didn’t.

2. Establish Time Zone Rules

When you start working with a client, have time zone talk. When setting deadlines, meetings, and or time sensitive correspondence, will you set dates and times using ir local time or yours?

Since you should make things as easy as possible for your client, offer to always use ir local time. Set that as standard for all conversations going forward. It seem silly to talk about it but any owner who deals with non-local clients will tell you of confusion of setting phone or online meetings with some .

3. Be Time Considerate

If you’re working with in California and you’re in Eastern time zone, be kind and don’t schedule anything until at least early afternoon unless y prefer early morning meetings. On or hand, if you have a client in London, schedule things for early morning your time since y’re 5 hours ahead. And be careful of when you text people. It’s easy to fire off text messages without thinking about somebody who is sleeping that has ir phone sitting next to m on ir nightstand.

4. Keep Constant Communication

You’re rarely going to see your clients outside of your geographic area, most likely. In age of technology, it’s easy to be effective without being physically on site, but at our core, we’re still more comfortable talking to humans rar than comers and smart phones.

Give your a sense of comfort by communicating as constantly as appropriate. Schedule Skype or Facetime calls every once in a while, to keep human element involved. Don’t be annoyingly present but be easily reachable during normal hours—and after hours, actually.

5. 24-Hour Work Day

If you’re an online selling products, for example, your reach is worldwide. You will need people ready to answer customer service calls 24 hours per day. Some companies use call centers for this but if you don’t plan to outsource customer service, eir have a team scheduled or go route of Apple and have work-from-home customer service reps around world.

6. Outsource to Where Your Are

Companies often solve time zone issues by outsourcing to countries around world. Call centers, manufacturing, software development, and adstrative tasks can happen anywhere in world now. Especially for small owners, foreign outsourcing a little scary—how will you know if y’re working and doing a good job? How do you find right workers?

With a small investment of your time, you can not only help your own , you can help a person or people around world by providing a job and steady .

If you believe in keeping labor in your home country, foreign outsourcing isn’t for you but re are plenty of and humanitarian advantages to taking work out of country.

Along with time zone issues can also come cultural considerations. Workers familiar with that culture can improve customer service experience while also removing time zone issues from your plate.

7. Have Boundaries

Breakfast in one time zone is dinner in anor. Sundays where you work is Monday somewhere else. If you have a with international reach, you could literally work all day, every day—and some owners come close to doing that.

You owe it to yourself and your family to work away at some point. Chic Fil A had revenue of more than $6 billion in 2015 yet y are closed on Sundays. More work isn’t necessarily better work. Take some time to rest and relax.

Bottom Line

If you always keep a customer-first , challenges of different time zones are easy to navigate. Be willing to sacrifice for ir comfort and ease of working with you.

Remember, y’re likely anxious about working with somebody so far away. Be intentional about calming anxiety be staying overly accommodative.

© 2016 Attard Communications, Inc. All Rights Reserved. May not be reproduced, reprinted or redistributed without written permission from Attard Communications, Inc.


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