I am working in a retail store. There is one to three of employees working at a time, usually with no manager on site. I have almost never worked with the manager and mainly communicate with him through text messaging and verbal notes he passes on to other employees. My first question is, is it reasonable to suggest to the manager to leave written notes just to reduce the chance of miscommunication of someone relaying?
One of my coworkers has been giving me huge lists of things to do. I think he's getting me to do most of the work while he just sits waiting for a customer; in other words I don't think the work is being distributed fairly. For example he just sits at the checkout waiting for a customer to come while I'm moving all the boxes around in the cooler. Is it fair to bring to management's attention that one person is almost always doing the harder task (either to get more recognition or to have the work divided more evenly)?
Something specific happened the other day. The manager scheduled me as "crowd control" since we can only let so many people in the store given COVID precautions. I very much liked this task. However, the way the manager wrote it on the schedule (which everyone sees) was "casablancaeggplant [me]: crowd control, duty X, duty Y, duty Z". Right when I arrived a co-worker gave me a huge list of things to do for duties X,Y,Z. I asked him why he couldn't do it and he said the schedule said it was my responsibility. I'm pretty sure the manager did not mean the X,Y,Z was my EXCLUSIVE responsibility, but it's still shared. As per the answer given on this question, I messaged my manager saying "co-worker told me I'm the only one doing X,Y,Z. Is that correct? I won't be able to do crowd control if I'm e.g. taking out the trash". The manager replied "look, it takes 2 minutes to take the trash out. Crowd control is for later when it gets busier". I replied "so the other people working are just staying on till the whole shift and not helping?" to which he replied "they will help out too and this is your job, got it". I told him right when I walked in, the people who had started earlier gave me a list of 28 tasks and asked if he knew about that. He said that he tells people to write a list right when they come in and I should do it to.
I think I angered him with my messages. I think having this kind of conversation is not well suited to text messages. Is it reasonable to ask to be scheduled to work a shift with him? Even if he does tell people to write lists of things to do (which I hadn't heard before) I don't think he means to give to someone else the list to do. And 28 tasks is rather a large number and I think they were just waiting for me to arrive to do everything (in fact the other coworkers said "why didn't we do this earlier?"). My ideas for next time someone gives me a list of things to do: Ask "why can't you do it?" and "I am already working on X". If they persist and the list is long, I could say "how would you like to divide the work? We could split the list in half". I could say I prefer to write my own list of things to do, but then they may argue they are just saving me the work of looking for what needs to be done.