I am currently working as software engineer, and basically my work is everything from designing solutions, through coding, testing and implementation. A-Z basically.

As for the question in title, let me give you an example:

I developed and tested a solution on demo environment provided by 3rd party we work with. I made the necesseary bug fixes, changes etc. This took me a week. Then I contacted an integration expert on the other side, passed him my results and asked to check on his side if everything is okay. This took me about a week of work, so I expect them to take anywhere betweeen 2 days and 2 weeks to check everything (we are not their only client). There was no deadline set for the project on our side.

After I sent the email to the 3rd party, I updated my manager on the status - that we are done with tests on our side, now they're testing and checking it on their side.

An hour later, the manager came to me and asked if I got a reply and a green light from the other company. I was a bit puzzled, and explained that I just sent them our results, and we will probably not hear back from them in an hour.

This then continued, for 4 days straight, until we got the results from the other team (they were keeping me updated, so communication was not an issue). Every hour or 2, my manager would come in and ask "did they reply yet? have you e-mailed them? call them now, we need the status now". I decided to keep the communication on reasonable level, since I think calling the guy every hour like my manager wanted with what is basically "are we there yet?" variation would make me look highly unprofessional.

This is not a single occurence, just an example. He behaved like this on many occasions.

What's the most puzzling thing about this for me, is that my manager, before he became one, was occupying my position (I was basically hired to replace him since he went on the be the manager), so he should know full well how those things work.

So my question is, how do I deal with such requests? Should i nod and do my work, explain him every time that it's not how things work, pass him communication details to the 3rd party, or just keep spamming said party with calls and emails around the clock?

up vote 9 down vote accepted

You certainly don't want to annoy the customers the way your manager is annoying you! Perhaps the next time he does that, you should ask him why:

Hey manager - I just sent the data to them for checking an hour ago. You've done this in the past, and you know that they usually don't respond for at least a day or two, sometimes even a week. Is there a reason why you're checking now? Is there an urgency that I am unaware of? If I need to ask them to expedite it, I can do so. But next time, perhaps it should me who is speeding things up so I don't have to annoy the customer.

In other words, let him know that if he needs things faster, he needs to communicate that to you in the beginning, not when it's too late to make a difference. And if he's just got some nervous tic, asking him to explain should make him find a different way to deal with it.

  • let him know that if he needs things faster, he needs to communicate that to you -- This. I like the suggested wording to use with the manager too. – Mister Positive Jan 31 at 13:31

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