I work as a mid-level software engineer. We have team channels where people can reach us on. But for some reason people always message me in a private message or they visit my office for team related tasks or product owner tasks. I keep telling them to ask the person in charge or communicate through our team channel, but they don't.
I don't want to be rude to them, yet I find my frustration growing. Sometimes I feel like they can't bother to formalise their requests, so they go to me to quickly mention whatever is bothering them, so they later can refer to our "discussion" if the issue is brought up again.
What should I do?
This happens all the time, especially in larger companies where it takes some time to search through past discussions or find the right forum to ask a question.
One reflection for you: is this an awareness issue? If people are aware of the team channel, have you made it as easy as possible for people to get help there? You could do some lightweight user research next time someone asks you a question if there's some friction in the existing channels that could be removed. (I left some thoughts on user research/product sense in this Q&A)
Beyond that, I have two thoughts:
The approach I'd take depends on your quick judgment on how much legwork this person did before coming to you.