...A Client or Co-Worker Doesn’t Follow Through
What to say when a client or a coworker doesn't follow through, and sometimes it's your boss. So here's the situation. You're working on a team project and your coworker agrees to do something, make a phone call, do some research, write some content, and then they never do it, which prevents you from doing your part, creating a bottleneck for the entire project. Here's what you may be thinking and shouldn't say. That person never does what they say they will, which may be true. But here's a solution. You have to find a way to clear the bottleneck, so the project can continue to completion. Here's what you could say. Be direct. Our policy is to stick to the schedule that our client approved but without your piece of content, we're in danger of delaying this project. Or use curiosity. Are you aware that I'm still waiting for that research you said you would do or that feedback on that project? I can't move ahead until I get that. Or with generosity. I'm sure you're really busy so is ther...
e something I can do to make it easier for you to get me what I need to complete the project. Or with humility. I may have misunderstood but I thought we agreed that you were going to collect those images for the website, or I thought you were going to review that material before I proceed. Here's the overarching idea. This other person, even your boss, may not realize how they fit into the project or that they are creating a bottleneck. So you may need to speak up, and let them know how their actions are affecting others and the project. If they will not do the task, you have to find a way around it or go around them. And if its your boss, they may be aware of it but just too busy to make it a priority. In that case, you need their approval or consent that if you don't proceed because of their inaction you are not responsible for the consequences. That sometimes gets things moving. Make sense?