5

I live in Europe, while my clients are mostly from US. Thus, the smallest timezone difference between me and my clients is -4hours, the biggest being -9hours. Yet, I also have a customer in Asia, giving me a +4hours customer. Scheduling calls starts to be a bit painful.

My method is to have 2 days a week marked as call-possible-days, and on those days I offer time slots when a client asks for a call or I need one.

Do you have any other tools/methods you use? This is not a "wood under the toe nail" problem, but definitely something that grinds my gears.

2

I also have clients from the US/Canada and South America. I do not have practice to have call days. I rather set call time for each client individually. So Jeff knows that we can talk on Mon at 9AM his time, Matt knows that we can talk on Wed 12PM his time, and so on.

If they need me quickly, they can always message me via Skype and see if I am available for a quick chat. In urgent matters, I will leave my current work and go talk to them.

I really see no point why limiting yourself for calls or have special call days. Each call is not just a call, but it's a remote meeting so it should be treated as a meeting not as a call from a friend.

  • Exactly. My point is - when I open every day pretty soon every day starts to look like swiss cheese. An hour of work, a 'maybe' call, 2 hours of work, 45 minute chat and so on. Pretty soon I see it impacting my productivity. – mdomans Jun 11 '14 at 8:02
  • Any call or chat concerning the project is paid time. You are not losing money if you are charging this. Only you can lose is concentration or productive idea. – Peter MV Jun 11 '14 at 8:12
  • Well - isn't that a loss? On a fixed value project that's a problem – mdomans Jun 11 '14 at 8:43
  • You must calculate this cost (Project discussions and random discussions) in the fixed-price as well. Either set it as fixed price per project or add some percentage to the project. – Peter MV Jun 11 '14 at 10:12
  • It's not uncommon for a fixed-price contract to include X hours for calls/meetings, and everything beyond that to be charged hourly. – Travis Northcutt Jun 16 '14 at 1:14

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