I used to work on at one company, on one project, Project A. Now I work at another company on another project, Project B. None of my old coworkers are involved with Project B in any way.

I was asked a question in B that I was asked, and that I answered, in A. Should I just forward the email answering the question in A to B?

I think I should because I'm lazy to rewrite it and, more importantly, the answer was accepted so that I can have a support from people from A to convince people from B that this answer is correct (which mean I have to forward the reply message too).

I think I should not because it will show that I'm a lazy person.

closed as unclear what you're asking by Jim G., Jan Doggen, gnat, yochannah, Chris E Dec 15 '14 at 13:28

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • Are you working for the same company and doing projects A and B for them? Who pays your salary? – Jan Doggen Dec 13 '14 at 14:09
  • @JoeStrazzere: I know that it's not a good quality. But sometimes you should be lazy – Ooker Dec 13 '14 at 16:38

You could base the answer from project B on what you wrote for project A. I would not forward the email chain because you could expose email addresses, contact information, or other confidential information included in the email chain.

I would start my answer with a phrase such a: a few years ago; or on an earlier project. And then write the new answer. The opening statement gives the context that you have seen this type of problem before.

The effort of paraphrasing and restating the answer means that you are making sure that your answer truly applies to the new project. It can be embarrassing if the copy and pasted answer includes an obvious error that proves you just copied and pasted the answer.

  • I forgot about the confidential information. Thank you for reminding me. So you suggest that I should write it completely new? Can I say: "I have been asked for this question once. Following here is my reply for it", then copy and paste? – Ooker Dec 13 '14 at 16:41

No no and more no. Why you would think it's acceptable to forward an email from a company you no longer work for is totally beyond me. It's a total breach of confidentiality and you probably shouldn't have those emails anyway as they belong to your old company.

At the very least, you should copy and paste the content into a new email if it really is completely relevant, but in truth you should 're pen it.


If you think you're going to keep getting this question, I would suggest taking the time to extract the important information and save it as a "standard answer" you can send out when necessary.

Even better, if your product maintains a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document on the web, contribute this tip to that page; then (a) people may see it without having to pester you and (b) you can just point them to it.

  • Nice tip. I like it. – Ooker Dec 13 '14 at 18:46

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