We are a 2-developer team and a PM.

My colleague is new and his skills are lacking with regards to his position. As result he is getting a lot of help from he. My problem is that when it comes to the stand-up he never mentions that I am helping him. When I spend more than 30 minutes of my time to actually help a colleague I expect some credit. I was considering telling my manager that he is receiving a lot of help from me, but how would I do it in a way that does not make me look pathetic? Because it kind of makes me look pathetic I think :)

  • 1
    Whether one should be going to that detail in a stand-up is a separate question but could you not mention that you spent a bit of time helping said colleague when it comes to your turn perhaps?
    – Appulus
    Jun 18, 2021 at 7:17

4 Answers 4

  1. Keep in mind that it is expected from team members to help their team. So if you spend 30 minutes a day helping your teammate, I don't think this is out of the ordinary. Today you are helping him, tomorrow someone else will help you for 30 minutes.

  2. If you spent an hour and a half helping him and you think it's worth mentioning, you can on the Daily say something like:

Yesterday I worked on XY & helped Tomy with the challenge of Z. Today I will do ABC

  1. If you feel this is consuming too much of your time every day, in a way that it starts pulling you back in your tasks, you can use your 1:1 with your manager and mention that:

Just wanted you to know that Tomy needed my help every day for several hours in the last month. This is causing me to miss my goals. What should I do?

  • This is how it works in most places I've been. I also recommend keeping a log of interruptions so you can tell your manager exactly how much of your time is going to help others.
    – flexi
    Jun 18, 2021 at 9:29
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    In the last point, if you can, raise this with your manager before missing anything eg. "I'm getting too many interruptions, and requests for help, so I'm going to miss the deadline/goal if this continues, what do you want to do about it" -- I only mention specifics, such as names, if the manager specifically asks.
    – flexi
    Jun 18, 2021 at 9:35

Well, you just have to mention it yourself on the stand-up. You are spending 30 minutes of your time and its also your duty to help but not your duty to hide it. Be kind with your words and be transparent.

  • Good answer. The OP should be assertive and make his contributions in helping a fellow team member known. Dont wait for others to do what you can do to solve the issue yourself.
    – Anthony
    Jun 20, 2021 at 4:54

He might be afraid to look bad that he needs so much help. Does your workplace have a culture where helping each other is normal, or maybe even cherished? Or does he have to fear negative consequences for asking for help?

Does it make look you bad when you help a lot and it isn't explicitly mentioned? Or is it normal to help each other and it's expected to you spend a sizeable amount of your time helping others?

You said you think it might make you look pathetic. I would question that assumption in the context of your workplace. Also, a standup is a place to communicate on what you need to do and what you need to do it. It is not a place for progressreports, so I consider it normal not to go into detail on who helped whom.

Once you figured out how things are regarded in your workplace, I would talk to the coworker first. A simple: Hey, I kinda help you a lot, and I am a bit worried that my manager doesn't realize how much time I spent on you. I would appreciate if you mentioned it, so he knows what up. I'll comment on the good progress you make, that way we both look good!

Demanding credit often looks pathetic. Politely asking for it is often more effective.


Stand-ups are not about giving credit and getting pats on the back.

They are for assisting in completing work and (arguably) reporting status.

Unless you helping them is somehow important to the discussion, it should not be mentioned.

However, there is no harm in briefly mentioning it when it's your turn, if part of the purpose of the standup is to gauge what everyone is working on.

  • OP - PM, Doesn't sound like scrum. Best toot your own horn, cause no-one else will.
    – paulj
    Jun 18, 2021 at 12:15

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