Calling at 3AM

Gokul Rajaram is an incredibly smart operator + VC and I have learned tons from him on Twitter, but I don’t think this is the right take. No Indian founder is going to say no to a 3AM call from a big name US VC. It is upto the VC to realise this and come up with a reasonable meeting slot.

Related: I have seen so many friends who work for US companies (mostly FANGMULA) crib about having to take calls outside of work hours. We know we are the satellite office. So we have to accommodate the mothership time zone. But to think anyone does it willingly is naive.

I work for a SE Asian company. 9.30 AM in Jakarta is 8 AM here. 1.5 hours early is still reasonable. But we don’t set meetings that early. Same goes the other way round, say 7 PM in India that maps to 9.30 PM in Singapore. Hence we remind people to be considerate of those living in other countries.

(‘I love Slack’s it is 11PM there, do you still want to send this?’ nudge)

Maybe we are privileged to have this culture and this does not work everywhere. I get that. But it started with a few people saying No to outside of work hours invites. 1 hour here and there is fine occasionally. Just that it should not become a habit.

P.S I know that if you are running a startup you can’t get by with a 9-5 work schedule. I still would argue that if you are doing regular 3 AM meetings there is a high chance you are running low on sleep and your productivity is suffering. Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker is a great book on this topic. Even Keith Rabois who has had his fair share of work-life balance debates advocates an 8 hour sleep cycle every night for peak performance.