My coworker who likes to push his work to other people emailed my supervisor with me as CC. Email goes like this:

Hi Team Lead,

Here’s the task assignment for tomorrow.

A. WORK WORK WORK - assigned to Shiniboi

B. ANOTHER WORK - assigned to Shiniboi

C. Another work - assigned to Coworker2.

I wasn't aware that he will be out tomorrow. I emailed him that I was not aware and that next time as a courtesy he should inform me first given that I am the one doing his work. He did not respond. Wow, seen zoned.

I am really annoyed at this. I planned to calmly talk to my supervisor regarding this. Furthermore, the supervisor is friends with this person and both of us are not yet regular/permanent at work. I just hope that my supervisor would see where I am coming from.

How about you guys? Is it correct to ask for a little courtesy? I feel disrespected/slighted.

*EDIT : Just an update. *

  1. He(Guy1) did not respond right? Now his friend(Guy2) who is also my coworker asked me if there is a problem about the endorsement because Guy1 asked him if what he did is wrong. Guy2 said he told Guy1 that he should at least talked to me because what if I am also out of the office that time? Guy2 said that Guy1 acknowledge his mistake.

He acknowledge he is wrong but he did not apologize to me??? He is giving me the cold treatment.

  1. The time the guy was away there were 5 escalations that I handled. The guy was actually commended by my manager saying HE IS GOOD THAT HE ENDORSED HIS WORK. Manager and supervisor does not even acknowledge that I AM THE ONE WHO SOLVED ALL THE ESCALATIONS.
  • 1
    Has this happened before? Did your manager authorize this endorsement?
    – DarkCygnus
    Sep 4, 2019 at 0:10
  • 4
    I am confused. Why would he have to notify you that he plans to be away tomorrow? You are not his supervisor. Did the supervisor ask him to assign the work? Is this usual? Sep 4, 2019 at 0:19
  • 1
    Apart from feeling "out of the loop" is there any actual impact on you from finding out late? Sep 4, 2019 at 0:35
  • 2
    @Gregory Currie He will be out of the office tomorrow, Supervisor said that when we go on leave there should be someone who will take on the job. I was not aware that the one to do his job is me. I want to be notified because 1) it will add to my workload and 2) I am not fully trained to do his work so I need to prepare.
    – Shiniboi
    Sep 4, 2019 at 0:45
  • 4
    I'm really confused here. Why is your coworker, who is not your supervisor, telling your actual supervisor what are the task assignments? Isn't it your supervisor's job to do this?
    – user83608
    Sep 4, 2019 at 18:25

6 Answers 6


How about you guys? Is it correct to ask for a little courtesy? I feel disrespected/slighted.

Seems a bit unprofessional and strange to me that your coworker approached the situation the way they did.

The exception would be that somehow you missed the meeting/email where such endorsement would happen, perhaps an email you forgot to read or something. It would be worth to double check if this didn't happen so you don't misinterpret the situation.

Anyways, assuming that this was never mentioned to you, I suggest you reply back to the ones involved in the thread, as to ask for clarification and (politely) get your message across that you would like to be consulted first in future incidents. Something on the lines of:

Hello everybody.

I'm afraid that I was not aware that Joe would not be working tomorrow, nor that we had to take over his tasks for that day. For future situations like this, please it would help me to be informed beforehand so I can prepare myself.

Furthermore, given that now we have new tasks, I would like to ask how should we handle the tasks we had already? Should we give these new tasks priority over the others?

Thanks, Shinobi.

If, after this, similar situations happen again I would consider talking this with your coworker and supervisor directly (but professionally). Consider if, eventually, raising it with your manager is the only solution left.

  • We don't exactly know what the situation is. The coworker may have told the supervisor they will be away a few weeks ago, and then the day before the supervisor could have asked them to assign their tasks over. Thought he way the question is worded suggests this is a habit of this coworker. Sep 4, 2019 at 0:41
  • I asked OP for some more details, so we can answer better. If this is not the first time then perhaps escalating with manager seems more adequate
    – DarkCygnus
    Sep 4, 2019 at 0:44
  • Well he always say "need help" and he asked for 9 people to assist him in managing his assignment/task.
    – Shiniboi
    Sep 4, 2019 at 0:55
  • Usually he spend his time teaching others how to do his work. When not teaching others (and well 9 people are doing his job already) he will spend his time on project improvement plans/those that gets him more credit and certifications. Sometimes we do overtime just to finish his work but he goes home early.
    – Shiniboi
    Sep 4, 2019 at 1:00
  • 2
    @Shiniboi It sounds like you have more fundamental workflow issues in the team that need to be addressed. Sep 4, 2019 at 1:02

You can answer to your supervisor while CC your co-worker:

Hi Supervisor, My workload is

  1. Work
  2. work
  3. work
  4. co-worker work
  5. co-worker work work

Could you send me deadline for them so I could arrange them? Also is there someone I could ask about co-worker work as there are some things I need to get clarified and explained

I would do that because your supervisor might be under impression that your co-worker passed to you all necessary information WHILE making you aware with that expected earlier notice.

  • This is the right answer. Also ask your boss for priorities for these tasks; you can't do all at once, so which ones have to wait. This way you show that you can handle the situation in a professional manner.
    – RedSonja
    Sep 4, 2019 at 14:16

The problem with this whole thing is you are relying on a notion of courtesy, rather than policy and procedure. Different people will have different understanding about what is courteous.

You seem to have been informed quite late that your workload will increase. It is unclear to me what impact that will have on you, and what the expectations are from management.

Rather than complain, or speak with the supervisor, regarding the actions of the coworker, you should try to establish a proper policy regarding this. This would include how much notice to teammates would be given, who can allocate work, and what type of work is higher priority. Obviously when discussing with your supervisor, you should be prepared to highlight specific problems with how things are currently done.

Then should the coworker breach this policy, then you have a bit more than "I feel disrespected" to go to your supervisor with.

  • Yes I plan to suggest that a policy/procedure be made like days people should be notified, etc.
    – Shiniboi
    Sep 4, 2019 at 0:52
  • 1
    The first paragraph in this answer is a beautiful way to justify "policy/procedure" in general. The advantage of policies is that they remove ambiguity. Your question is basically about ambiguity (I was upset because someone did something I did not expect.) Having a policy - or even an unofficial statement from your supervisor which sets expectations - will remove that ambiguity, or at least will give you something to fall back on if this continues to happen in a way that surprises you.
    – dwizum
    Sep 4, 2019 at 14:41

not yet regular/permanent at work

Assuming you want to be permanent, you don't rock the boat too much. You have already emailed him with your concerns.

But you should have (still can) emailed the supervisor and ask for confirmation and give any reasons that you wouldn't be able to do the task such as time or location if there are any. If you don't have any reasons, you shouldn't let it upset you visibly. You're trying to create a good impression, concentrate on that.


I assume that your coworker has no authority to assign work to you without your consent. I'd reply to the email saying that this is the first you've heard about the "assignment" and ask that he give you more notice in the future. Also request that he discuss it with you in advance so that you have the ability to either agree or disagree to the task. Again, you don't have to do it just because he asks you to; he has no authority to force you to accept the task.

I'm not sure about the exact wording of the email. Obviously, you'll want to make it polite, but you should be clear about your desire that he discuss assignments with you in advance.

  • No authority at all. He is just the supervisor's friend coughs
    – Shiniboi
    Sep 6, 2019 at 1:28

Been in that situation before. The co-worker gave an assignment like an order. I was new on the job. I thought it was strange he was being rude but I didn't want to rock the boat. The next thing I know he's telling the manager that I volunteered to do the work. My advice is to ignore the guy's email. It's on him if he fails to get work done that his manager assigned to him. Yes, being a team player is important but it only works if everyone is on the same team. In other words, would he do your job for you if you assigned it to him? I'm guessing not given how he approached this.

In my case, the guy kept trying to order me around and go overboard. I ignored him from then on. Eventually he got the message.

  • Ignoring it is risky, because the boss might be under the impression that this assignment was mutually agreed and could hold OP responsible, if deadlines are missed
    – Simon
    Sep 5, 2019 at 7:57
  • The supervisor was CCed into the email... That's probably enough to suggest that the supervisor approves of the assignment, or that it's acceptable. Sep 5, 2019 at 8:17
  • The superior was not CCd. The email was addressed to the superior telling him exactly how I posted the email : "Hi Team Lead here is the task assignment tomorrow"... I am the one CCd.
    – Shiniboi
    Sep 6, 2019 at 1:18

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