I've had some frustrating situations with a colleague who will say that they will do something but then never do it. Is there a way to "encourage" them to respond more promptly? I take it as a sign of incompetence. I do sometimes follow up with a reminder but this colleague is not somebody I can rely on.

  • 2
    Try knocking on their office door (when in the office), calling their phone (when working remotely), or just stop relying on the colleague, work with someone else
    – user2768
    Sep 1, 2020 at 16:56
  • I suspect the only real way to deal with this is get used to it. The majority of senior people in academia are unresponsive. If its really important, then as user2768 says go knock on their door, or call their phone, and wait with them til the thing you want done is done. But it had better genuinely be that important. Sep 1, 2020 at 17:19
  • 1
    Colleague or advisor? Makes a big difference.
    – henning
    Sep 1, 2020 at 17:29
  • @henning: former PhD adviser (I got my PhD but I still need to talk to this person)
    – Mehta
    Sep 1, 2020 at 17:34
  • 2
    I don't think this question is specific to academia. The world is full of people who are difficult to work with. Sep 2, 2020 at 4:46


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