I work for a very large, multinational company. In our company, we are often tasked to work with employees from different countries, from different teams, etc.
Recently, I had to work on a big project, involving lots of menial tasks. I believed that I would not be able to finish the tasks in the given time, so I requested for someone to help me. A co-worker (let's call him Bob), with whom I had never worked with before, was assigned to help me.
I explained all the details to him, asked him several times if he understood, to which he agreed. I asked Bob how long he believed it would take him, and he said he would be done in two days.
I tried to contact him, and did not get a reply. I tried several more times, on various channels (e-Mail, phone, etc.) and never got a reply. Several days later, way past Bob's self-set deadline, I got an e-Mail containing "partial work", with no explanation as to why the work was delayed, or in such a bad condition.
I sent him an e-Mail, asking about the remaining documents and the reason for the delay, as well as the "mediocre" quality of the work. He replied, apologizing for being late (but not giving a reason for it), promised everything (including the already sent documents) would be ready on Monday and done in a much better quality.
On Monday, I did not get any documents. I tried reaching Bob, but to no avail. On Tuesday lunch he sent me a message, saying everything is done, and I will get everything in two hours. The time passed, the documents were missing an Bob was not reachable.
On the end of Tuesday, Bob sent me an e-Mail with just the documents attached, nothing else. Somehow, the work was even worse than before. At this point I just gave up getting help from him and instead I did the rest myself, including what he had attempted to do.
I explained the situation to my manager, but I didn't get direct instructions from him either.
As such, I would like to ask the following:
- Should I have acted differently when dealing with Bob?
- How should I act if I am assigned to working with Bob in the future? How can I politely refuse?