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How do you deal with a developer that constantly challenges your propositions in a rhetorical matter?

For example, say if we have a problem and I propose solution A (along with my reasons why), the developer would then shoot it down - not with another alternative solution or exploration path but instead a rhetorical question.

It has gotten *exhausting* working with this person because every interaction becomes almost a debate. This isn’t just particularly with development but even during casual discussions.

I’ve even tried asking “so what would you suggest?” in which they would answer with confidence in a rhetorical matter - but without any concrete decision making (but at the same time sounding like they did make one).

We work in a team and nobody has taken the reigns of leadership (he’s quiet most meetings), so I decided to take initiative and make the calls. All of a sudden, he has a voice that is mostly axed towards being argumentative than productive. It has come to a point where I’ve just stopped making propositions because I’ve become exhausted trying to defend myself and literally repeating something like 4-5 times, however this is a project that needs to be delivered and because we work closely together, I can’t just ignore him and do my own thing.

Comments
  • 2
    Can you discuss this with him privately? Or get a manager involved if talking doesn't solve it?
  • 5
    Unless he has an alternative, go ahead with your solution underlining the risks associated, if any
  • 3
    Are we working with the same person?
    I feel your pain.
  • 3
    "Put up or shut up"
  • 4
    The developer is not being collaborative. If the developer doesn’t provide in sufficient detail an alternative solution that both avoids problems he points out in your work AND solves the problem your already solved with your solution, then you can just document your solution and move forward with it and note the other developer’s discernible concerns. Engineering requires carefully considering trade offs. Nit picking doesn’t count.
  • 1
    Run ASAP. That place is toxic!
  • 0
    @scorpionk one guy makes you run away from your job?
  • 0
    @alexbrooklyn if nobody is taking leadership as he mentioned, then yes run away.
  • 1
    Aaand back to the real world.

    Start calling him out. Ask him in front of the team to elaborate on his alternative solutions.
  • 0
    I think it makes sense to engage reasoning, even maybe in form of some deposition: in chat with other co-workers that can review what arguments were presented so far and how fair is the decision y'all were coming to. 🤓
    My closing arguments are usually very decisive, because they are presented step-by-step, facing incoming questions, and apparently were noticed by team members.
    It's hard to refute your point once they admit its reliability on "public".
  • 0
    @endor I don’t understand
  • 0
    @Benutzername I feel this is pretty common in the Dev world esp with those who are much more socially inept than usual.
  • 0
    @succyproggy as in: my sarcastic reply to such a "developer" would be "bring something useful to this conversation or shut up".
    I hate people who are argunentative just for the sake of wasting time and don't contribute with useful information.
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