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Liz Trocchio Smith

Liz Trocchio Smith
Certified Executive Business Coach
and Trusted Advisor

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Set Clear “Communication Hours” For Your Team

When your team is working remotely — and possibly on different schedules — people can feel like they’re expected to be online all the time. But this lack of distinct downtime isn’t good for you or your team. As a manager, it’s your responsibility to establish communication norms while encouraging people to continue to work flexibly as needed.

Define clear “communication hours,” for example, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., when team members are expected to check and respond to messages. Outside of those hours, encourage them to change their settings to “Do Not Disturb” and to send messages using the schedule feature of their email. Develop a plan, such as calling or texting, for urgent or time-sensitive communication outside of these hours. This way, people can comfortably shut off other channels, like email or Slack. Plus, the act of calling or texting a teammate is likely to make the sender pause and think, “Do I really need this person now, or can it wait until tomorrow?” An “always-on” culture isn’t sustainable, and these boundaries allow team members to set their own hours and not feel like they have to accommodate everyone else’s schedule.

Make it a great day!

 

Source:  Harvard Business Review