{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "I’ve been on PTO since Friday & won’t return until next week. It’s been scheduled for months & was on our project calendar. My OOO response is on. Since 5PM Fri, I’ve received 4 lengthy emails....", "post_id": "5e00a36092134e001cd43092", "reply_count": 9, "vote_count": 0, "bowl_id": "59e88be7e2808e00149b0443", "bowl_name": "Women In Consulting" }

I’ve been on PTO since Friday & won’t return until next week. It’s been scheduled for months & was on our project calendar. My OOO response is on. Since 5PM Fri, I’ve received 4 lengthy emails....

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... from one of our subcontractors who has clearly waited until the last minute to do their work. The emails are long lists of questions. Questions I’ve answered in the past for them, questions they could answer themselves by looking at the documentation, and mixed with some stuff they can’t possibly answer for themselves. I know this sub well enough to know that they’re going to bring up my being on PTO to the customer as a risk, and the customer is going to tell my boss that I need to resolve this ASAP.... and I’m going to have to give in and do so. My question: when I talk to the sub, they’re going to apologize for interrupting my PTO. How do I communicate professionally that this is not ok? What’s the best way to make sure they know that this shit should not happen again?

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Why are you even checking your email? I just find it amazing how we complain about WLB but then put ourselves in positions where we are allowing others to jeopardize our time. All that to say if you covered your bases before you left (always CYA in writing) then worry about it when you get back. Enjoy your time off. I'm sure they'll figure it out when you don't respond.

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If no one will actually die from your lack of response...or your client’s business won’t go under...or any other actual catastrophe of that nature...turn off your email and enjoy your time off. None of us is indispensable, and a few days one way or the other won’t kill your sub. It’s not the end of the world and if your sub can’t solve a problem without your input, they shouldn’t make it your responsibility.

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Who is your OOO coverage point? I'm not sure what the reporting structure is here, but when I'm OOO, there is a coverage plan and a coverage person. So that sub should be referring to both before contacting you. I also have a contact plan for OOO emergencies. Either they must call / text (makes it more of a hurdle, but still easy for true emergencies) or sometimes they must reach out directly to my manager who has my personal number (I have 2 cell phones). With all of this documented. It then becomes a clear case of person didn't respect my PTO and/or cants work independently for a limited, pre-planned period and this is an issue on them that needs to be taken seriously. When it's a response to an email, it looks more like a case of you checking in while on PTO and voluntarily responding to email.

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I’d CYA to my manager that I got these calls and the sub already has the info they need, they are just too lazy to look thru the docs (how I phrase that would depend on the kind of relationship that I have with my manager). Ask your manager to make the call on how/if you respond. That way your boss isn’t blindsided if the client comes to them. Your boss owns the client relationship and you need to keep them informed. Also, they need to know that this is how that sub operates. Maybe they need to get a new sub if the sub is inclined to throw you under the bus like that during PTO when you already covered your bases

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I’d answer the questions but state that you need to debrief on the disconnect when you get back. Then when you’re back gather your thoughts and check with your superiors if needed, but then say exactly what you said about how it wasn’t ok, was unprofessional and shouldn’t be repeated. It’s important to give direct feedback

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Do you have documentation of having answered it even proactively addressed these on the past? Reach out to your boss and/or backup and have them help you handle if they can. If you're the single person who can answer, yeah you'll probably have to interrupt your PTO. If you saw this coming, would have saved yourself some pain by preemptively addressing the tasks by sending email follow-up and laying out some key points to cover yourself. Sucks this happened but lesson learned.

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I agree that the best thing to do is follow up and lay out what needs to be done so that you can avoid working over the holidays but I’m guilty of that and prob need to send a couple emails tomorrow just for cya

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