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I am working part-time in a small team, where my task is relatively isolated from the others' work.

My supervisor is currently on vacation. At the beginning of this month, an intern started working in our office, who is supervised by my boss.

My boss, who is currently on vacation, sent the intern an email telling him to ask me about the project and that I should pass on what I have worked on so far.

I do have another low-priority task remaining, but I am concerned that my boss did not inform me about this issue at all.

  • Is this normal workplace procedure? Personally, I find it rather frustrating, but that might just be me.
  • How can I professionally react to this issue? Should I email my supervisor now (while he is on vacation)? I would rather wait for him to come back to work, but I don't have a whole lot to do.
  • Should I take precautions about being terminated/losing my job now?

(I do realize the last point might be opinion-based, please comment if you feel this is the case, and I will remove this point)

Edit: I am certain my supervisor reassigned the task to the intern because someone else from my group confirmed it.

  • How is the intern doing? Do they have a lot of questions or are they making good progress on the project independently? That will affect how much of your time you need to spend on the project you are handing over. – Patricia Shanahan Aug 7 at 16:14
  • @Patricia Shanahan The intern is doing quite well, as far as I can tell. He has approached me a few times asking about my prior work, and it seems to me that he will be able to work mostly independent from me in the near future. I don't think that the processing of handing the work over has taken or will take a larger amount of time at any point. – Jonas Schwarz Aug 7 at 16:21
  • @JoeStrazzere I am very certain my boss reassigned the task to the intern. – Jonas Schwarz Aug 7 at 16:25
  • Were you CC-ed in that email? Do you have a copy of it? – Sandra K Aug 7 at 16:53
  • @SandraK I was not CC-ed, neither do I have a copy of the mail available (for whatever reason). – Jonas Schwarz Aug 7 at 17:21
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Based on your answer in the comments section, you were not CC-ed nor received a copy of the communication/assignment in question.

I would send my boss an email verifying the request, and would keep it simple. Something like:

Hello Boss,

Mr. Intern has requested me to walk him through my project X and that I should pass on what I have worked on so far.

Just wanted to confirm with you.

Then, I would do - keep doing - what my boss tells me to do.

Regarding your next point. I would just wait until I am done with my low-priority task and see what is my next task. If a low-priority one as well, in comparison to the intern, then I would prepare my resume and speak out honestly if I was asked why leaving.

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This really depends on context. It's entirely ok for interns to be given experience in real-world projects - you shouldn't really assume that your project is being handed over to someone with little experience and that you're now out of a job.

Your manager won't be on vacation forever, so re-evaluate things when he returns. In the meantime, work on those other work items and practice your mentorship skills and help the intern learn as much as you can.

Don't forget there's an avoidance of bus-factor here - you shouldn't assume that any project is your sole responsibility.

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