Sometimes you think you’re working with high school students who don’t know how to prioritize. They seem to have more time for gossip than work. They can go to the gym or a long lunch while you’ve mastered the art of eating while working. Someone conveniently forgot a deadline, and you’re the one pressed for time because of it. It gets worse: you needed someone’s input, but they failed to give you even the tiniest morsel of information.
It happens. You didn’t get the worst of the lot. Accepting that is the first thing you have to do.
The next thing is to change that god-awful system in place. Here are three ways to deal with unprofessional colleagues:
Send an Email
An email may be the most impersonal way of communicating with a person, but in the corporate world, it’s proof that you reached out to them. And you need that proof if you want to remind people of the tasks they missed. Don’t forget to CC everyone else involved in the task, such as your supervisor. Feel free to follow-up on that email.
Set Clear Deadlines
Sometimes people don’t mean to forget a task; they just didn’t know it was already due. Eliminate this problem by setting the deadlines clearly–and in writing. Fill out a job order properly, and include the deadline in your email, as well. Google Calendar usually detects placeholders for time in your email and asks the recipient if they want to save it in their calendar.
Talk to Them in Person
Why do you need to talk to them in person when they already have your email in their inbox? They may be swamped with hundreds of emails, just like you. If you need their help on a task and you need it soon, talking to them in person is still the best approach. Make sure there’s an email or job order to go with that verbal discussion.
Everyone in the office is expected to do their fair share of work. When your colleagues seem to forget that they are in the office for that, keep calm and send them a few reminders.