{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Is it unreasonable to ask someone from PT timezone to follow ET hours for 1 month during critical phase of the project? To be specific.. starting 9AM ET. Work day typically gets over at 6p ET or sooner sometimes, and this person makes it such a big deal and makes it sound like they are doing team a favor.", "post_id": "615dbdeaff7f50002a62db1a", "reply_count": 386, "vote_count": 39, "bowl_id": "552d1d24dc1c586b09d2d051", "bowl_name": "Consulting", "feed_type": "crowd" }
null

Is it unreasonable to ask someone from PT timezone to follow ET hours for 1 month during critical phase of the project? To be specific.. starting 9AM ET. Work day typically gets over at 6p ET or sooner sometimes, and this person makes it such a big deal and makes it sound like they are doing team a favor.

likefunnysmart
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OP: I’ve read your responses/ comments. It seems the issue is that you all catch up as a team daily at 9am ET before client call at 10AM ET. And that the person is ill prepared/ presents poorly.

Options to consider:
- Flip to an EY team *end of day* touchpoint where you all agree status and talking points for the client morning meeting.
- Agree with client that the West Coast team member doesn’t join due to time difference and that you/ another team member will present their update and take away any questions.
- Have regular coaching/ feedback sessions with team member to address performance concerns, as these have nothing to do with their working hours.

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Appreciate this! That’s what we are currently doing (minus expectations with client). Getting this person to join early was my last resort.

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Honestly it depends. I can totally see how it could be unreasonable when considering how one likes to structure their day-to-day. I used to work remotely from PST for 4 years while the rest of my team was on CST and although it was a big adjustment starting the day at 7am each morning... I got off at frikkin' 3pm! And I could usually get started in my PJs lol. Straight from bed to computer. :P It was worth it to have those two hours in the afternoon to do things or enjoy a beautifully sunny day. It was also nice for when we had to work a bit late, as it didn't inconvenience my schedule as much as my teammates in CST. I will say this was yeeears before the pandemic and it was my first ever opportunity to work from home, so I was also just pretty stoked not to have to sit in the office from 9-5 anymore lol No more 15 minute "resting my eyes" on the staircase in the back or having to sit around and find things to do if all my work is done early. Why not have a talk with said employee? I'm guessing they probably would be horrified to find that they're coming across so whiny and rigid about the arrangement.

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Why would you make someone wake up at 6 am their time just so you can finish by 6 pm est? If it’s so urgent, maybe they start at 8 am their time (11 est) and you end at 7 or 8 pm your time?
6 am is unreasonably early to start, and honestly 6 pm is unreasonably early to need to finish

likefunnysmart

@OW2 the only thing I have to add is that I feel bad for you. You have an unhealthy view of WLB, and at the same time some kind of weird bitterness over people who are well rested and join country clubs?

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Just realized how many people I would despise working with on this platform. How can you normalize such terrible expectations? A week, fine. More? Absolutely not. 6AM is not normal. YOU adjust. Not them. And they ARE doing you a favor. You and your team sound like selfish people. If it was you, you would be pissed.

likefunnyupliftinghelpful

Put the shoe on the other foot. Would YOU really want to be up and ready to go at 6am? I’m on CST and I actively schedule around the PST zone for meetings. I don’t expect them online before 8am their time. Seriously, is it critical? I’m sure you’re not curing cancer so all won’t be lost if you have to schedule a meeting at 11:30 your time. Or why don’t you work longer hours? Start your work day from 11:30 - 8pm??!

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Its because they ARE doing the team a favor. I would not make a big deal out of it especially if my workday ends at 3pm. But it does require some sacrifice to get started at 6am. You sound very unappreciative.

likesmartfunny

Yikes OP…

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Guess it depends on circumstances, but for me it wouldn’t be doable, regardless of whether it was reasonable or not. Have a little man in daycare and I’m not going to have him situated by 6:00am.

likefunny

I have a little man in day care but almost always work East Coast hours from the west coaster. Allows me to wrap up by 5 PM West Coast/8 PM Eastern and do dinner, bath and bed time, signing back on after if needed. I usually work from 5:30/6 to 7:30 AM, then I’m off from 7:30 to 8:15 or so for breakfast and daycare drop off, and then back on for the day.

likeuplifting

That’s a 3hr time difference. If this was not discussed and understood as a requirement ahead of the project I absolutely understand the persons frustration. They should do their best to be a team player for a month but to be honest, with the way you worded it, it doesn’t sound like you truly understand what you’re asking of this person, don’t show appreciation for it, and that person may pick up on it. If that person senses you’re not appreciative and understanding while working abnormal hours that effects your life, I too would be annoyed

likehelpfulfunny

Have you considered having a daily stand up at 9pm. EST? The 6pm pst timing for your west coast member could be beneficial.

Gets everyone aligned with what they need to be doing tomorrow starting on the east coast.

likefunny

Do you think they really end their work day by 3/4pm. Lol

This never happens

likefunny

It’s like someone telling you that you can be 50% on two projects when in reality it’s really just 100% on both

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Totally unreasonable and stupid. There’s virtually nothing we do in consulting that’s so time critical, the day’s start can’t be pushed for an hour or two, and still get a full day’s work done. It’s a consulting project, not the D-Day invasion.

If they’re only there to provide updates/status, they can do so by email and their project lead can communicate it at 9am. If this person is so critical to be present at the very beginning of the day, shift it to a 10am ET or 11am start. They start a little early and the Eastern folks stay a little late. Share the sacrifice. Sort of like a team effort. 😀

likefunnyhelpful

Love this. So tired of consultants at all levels acting like every single ask is absolutely time critical. Says a lot about company culture and (poor) leadership imo.

Appreciate all the responses and perspectives.. clearly the popular vote is that it is unreasonable. Perhaps we will need to work out a schedule where 2 days out of week it would be an ask / 3 days an option.

Folks who have personal commitments because of which this is an impossible ask, it’s understandable. But remember you are part of a team, and everyone is dealing with the pandemic, not just you. Being reasonable is subjective but as long as you play fair, you will receive fairness in response.

Folks who think they can use this as leverage to quit, please get a reality check. Your next job is going to be just as demanding because they are replacing you with your clone who just quit and are in desperate need. Granted you’ll get those extra 30-50k.. but that excitement will wear out fast.

funnylikesmart

One small detail, EY1, you might want to consider - 1 month on a 2 month project is 50% of the study. Making this normal is painful because of that ratio.

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Not unreasonable. I've been doing it for years on various projects even if it was just Fridays and not entire weeks. If they can't handle it for a month then they probably arent6cut out for consulting and need to be replaced.

likefunnysmart

CAPG1, to reiterate a point from D12, you just actively advocated for discrimination based on marital status and family status.
This is information that shouldn’t matter towards a decision. Sure it can make one easier to understand, but it isn’t necessary. If I was hired to work west coast hours and I don’t want to work east coast hours that’s it. Full stop. I don’t need a reason.

likefunny

See, it’s not unreasonable but it does seem like it should be easily avoidable.

Even 10 or 10:30 ET would be a dramatic improvement, 6 am start times everyday can get rough

like

Partner 1 the project probably got stuck with someone outside their time zone, and visa versa for the employee, because we’re so tight for staff. Can’t say “no” to a request on either end, so both team and staff are screwed. Flexibility is needed on both ends - and consistent 6am starts are not flexible!!

I would bet he’s willing to do it but just wants to be appreciated. Take that approach.

likesmart

OP, it seems that the root cause of your issue is that your team member is not connecting with the offshore team before signing off for the day, which would allow the offshore team to work more effectively overnight. The answer could be for you to take a late night call with your team member and the offshore team to ensure that touchpoint happens. Obviously not great for your WLB, but it would solve the core issue which would not be as effectively solved at 6 am PT.

likehelpful

Unreasonable to me. But plenty accept it.

likefunny

Omg EY - I would never want to be on a team with you.

1/ To be working at 6 am, they have to be up by 5 am and if they have family responsibilities/kids, they have to get it out of the way before they start working.

2/ To wake up at 5 am, they have to sleep atleast by 9:30 pm and will probably miss out time that they spend with their partner or to unwind. You also said that you've asked them to work late TWICE already.

3/ Were these working hours communicated before on boarding them? If not, the team knew that this person os based out of the west coast and work hour timings are different. Deal with it.

4/ We aren't doctors. We are (mostly) NOT saving lives through our work. Relax and take it easy! Live and let live!

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And to add, if they have to take their kids to school/daycare most of them don’t open that early.

like

Time for another overall comment. All of this new blood in consulting over the last 2 years, who has yet to see life of taking 6am flights, functioning effectively after client dinners, and needing to be on 6am/7am ET calls with client leadership in EU while traveling to ET timezone - is in for massive bubble burst. At that point, you will find my contemplation to politely request (not force) a couple of early morning calls while still laying in your cushy bed on the positive side of WLB. It’s all a perspective given where we are today. As many of you in this thread said, it shouldn’t matter if you have kids or are married or single. Flexibility and standard working hours should be ideal for all.. but all within reason. At the end of the day we are for profit organizations needing to get things done for our clients in specific time as per our contract.

Enjoy the weekend!

likefunnysmart

Also, on 6 am flights I was sleeping. To actually have to take calls and work at 6 am, I'm not sure I would be as functional. Just because it was the 'old' way of working doesn't mean it was the right way to work. I was lucky enough to have leadership that believed in work life balance, and we still sold a ton of engagements.

like

If the pandemic taught us anything, it is for leadership to be adaptable. Make the differing time zone work. Forcing change upon your team members to fit a non-adaptive scenario is not reflective of high quality leadership. Adapting your team dynamics to accomplish the same outcomes is.

like

It seems you have an open mind in trying to adapt which is great. My advice would be to leverage some people familiar with your project/team/area or even just broad project management and get their outsider advice on how to adapt. I imagine you have already tried everything in your own mind and team’s minds so a new perspective may breathe a solution or inspiration to a solution that could make things work. Use the “How can I make this work?“ mindset over the “Can something else can work?” mindset. You’ll get more innovative results with the former

I have been on such projects, initially I was all ok that I can make time zones work but the M/SMs don’t appreciate or accommodate at all. I was expected to have enough work ready for review by 11am ET (before my M in west coast comes online), and at the same time he would call me up at 7:30pm ET on Friday, if I said I started early, his question was oh do you start at 5am or so? They completely exploited me.
While I understand we have to cooperate etc, but each time I have seen the leaders take advantage. I was working east hours, west hours and on all India team calls too. No slack ever.
Please start being respectful of people’s lives and preferences. Someone may have a gym schedule at 6am, if they have kids, 6am is super busy for them. Please don’t assume you are right and rationale every single time.

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D4. This. Expectations of burning the candle from both ends and the middle. I've been on projects where EST, PST and IST timings were expected and working lunches. Like when was I supposed to eat or shower? And not a word of understanding or a single appreciation award either. Ridiculous and way too common at Deloitte.

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Tell me you definitely don’t have kids without telling me you don’t have kids 🙄

like

You got that right P1, no kids. 😬

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Honestly it depends? I could see it being necessary, but I could also see it being “I get all my work done anyway, you just want me online for optics “

likefunny

It's unreasonable. Most people aren't functional at 6am. If they have children, it's even worse because that morning time needs to be dedicated to tending to the kiddos.
Probably a bad idea for an ET project to staff someone from PT. Schedule expectations should probably be discussed in the role discussion so educated decisions can be made by both parties.

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Sounds like you guys made a staffing mistake when you assembled the project…

likefunny

Just replace them

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