Article | 3:25 min read

How to Cope with Those Annoying Coworkers

Life Events

Pretty much everyone has had that coworker that won’t stop talking, or the one that can never seem to stop complaining. Unless you are going to work alone in your home for the rest of your life, you’re going to need to learn to deal with them. So here are the main types to watch out for and what you should do to cope.

The Loud One
This is the person that you can hear from across the office. The one whose laugh startles you and insists on taking every call on speaker phone. This person can be heard whistling and singing all day long to the radio, with no concern to how it affects everyone else.

What to do: Tell the person about their bothersome habits. Ask them if they would mind turning down their music or if they could take their phone off of speakerphone. Be straightforward and they should understand.

The Know-It-All
The first person to inform you how you should be doing your job, this person seems to know all the answers. They somehow know what kind of raise you're going to get and all the things that you did wrong during the day.

What to do: Allow their opinions to go unacknowledged. Let them know that you'll think about what they have to say and potentially consider for the future, and then simply move on.

The Talker
This is the person who will come into your cubicle for twenty minutes and tell you about their dinner last night. They don't seem to ever have work and always have a plethora of words to say. You don't want to be rude, but you really need to get your tasks done.

What to do: Politely let them know that you have a report due soon or that you have to run to a meeting. And if they don't get the hint, you might need to be more direct and tell them you don't have time to talk.

The Slacker
Slackers never seem to do any work, yet never get in trouble. They can be seen surfing the web during the day and constantly updating their Facebook pages. They almost make you wonder why you even have to work so hard if they aren't.

What to do: If the slacker isn't directly affecting your job performance, you just need to let it go. There's a good chance that your boss notices and may have even communicated the problem to the person. If their work does affect your job, talk to them first. Let them know that you rely on them and need their help. If that doesn't work, you might need to go to your boss for more help.

The Gossip
Juicy rumors seem to circulate throughout the office and the gossip is always in on the action. They can be seen whispering to coworkers, and asking everyone about their personal lives. Somehow, they know what your kids are doing at school and who had too good of a time at happy hour. They somehow know information about everyone, so how do you get away?

What to do: Avoid gossip situations. If you see a gossip group forming, walk the other way and say that you have a meeting or a project. If the gossip is asking you for personal information that you don't want other people to know, respectfully tell them that you're not comfortable talking about it. Taking yourself out of the situation is the easiest way to avoid being sucked in. And if somehow you become a subject of gossip, just let it ride. Though it may seem bothersome, the rumor about you will only last so long before people move on to the next topic.

The Grump
The world is always ending with this person. They never seem to smile and can usually find something to complain about. Their negative energy starts to bring you down and you don't want to give in to their depressing ways.

What to do: The best thing to understand is this person usually has things happening in their life that makes them this way. Happy people with functioning lives don't exude negativity the way a grump does. So joke with them. Use some of your positive energy to lighten them up. And if you get turned away, don't take it personally, their anger is not about you.

[1] How to get along with your most annoying coworkers, Business Insider
[2] The 9 Most Annoying Coworkers (And How to Deal With Them), Huffington Post


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