How Do I Schedule Meetings Across Different Time Zones?

As a part of a corporate network, you understand the importance of meetings. If your team members or clients are all within your local area, then finding a meeting time that suits everyone’s schedule shouldn’t be too difficult. But if you’re working for a business that often deals with international clients or has offices spread all over the United States, then finding a meeting time that suits everyone’s schedule can quickly become difficult.

To take the pain out of scheduling your next meeting, take a look at some best practices for ensuring all of your participant’s schedules are considered, regardless of their location:

Meetings across the U.S.:
If your team is working remotely across the U.S. or if you have clients spread across the states, you could be working with up to four major time zones: Eastern (EST), Central (CST), Mountain (MST) and Pacific (PST). Instead of spending time memorizing what states are in each time zones, we’ve got an easy solution to making a meeting time work for everyone in each of these time zones.

Typically, 2:00 pm EST is the perfect time for meeting with peers or clients in each of these time zones. This time allows for those working in the most western time zone (PST) to have time to arrive to work and prepare the meeting, while preventing the East Coasters from having to stay too late. Of course, if there is a conflict for someone during this time then give participants options an hour or two before or after the original time suggested.

Meetings across the Globe:
Scheduling meetings internationally is where things start to really get tricky because of the multitude of time zones you could be dealing with. Though there is not really a “perfect” time suggestion we can make for international meetings, there is a great tool you can use to help find a suitable time to meet. World Time Buddy is a website that deems itself as a “cross between a time zone converter, a world clock converter, and an online meeting scheduler.”

The tool, also available as an app, features a time table in which you can add your location and the locations of those you are meeting with, allowing you to see the times that are most appropriate for everyone. Once you have selected the best time, the tool can sync up and create a meeting invite on Outlook, iCalendar and Google Calendar.

There are plenty of scheduling tools out there to take the pain out of arranging those meetings across various time zones. Make scheduling and keeping track of your meetings easier with PGi’s Agenday® app, available for free on iTunes, Google Play and the Amazon app store.

Want to learn more about scheduling meetings? Check out The Best and Worst Times for Meetings.

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