Annoying coworkers are huge distractions and frustrating to deal with. Sometimes, we don’t know if we’re being annoying ourselves. Dealing with annoying co-workers can be difficult because we don’t want to hurt their feelings or come off as mean. You work with these people on a daily basis and having a bad relationship with them would be hard to deal with. When it comes to dealing with annoying coworkers, it’s important to be direct and assertive. It can be hard confronting people about this, but it must be done in order for you and your fellow co-workers to work in a better work atmosphere.
There are different types of annoying co-workers and it’s important to know which one you’re dealing with and how to address their annoying behavior.
The Loud One
This is the most common offender. This person has the most obnoxious ringtone, and above all, the loudest. On top of that, this person decides to talk like they’re at a concert, yelling into their phone when they take a call. They may have the volume on their computer, so you hear every email they receive and every g-chat message they send. They may also listen to talk radio or music at their desk. They fail to recognize that they’re being loud.
Solution: You have to give them a wake-up call and let them know that they are being loud. If they’re having a loud conversation on the phone, after the call ask if they can take the phone call away from their desk next time. Ask them to turn their phone on silent or vibrate, anything but that annoying ringtone. Ask them to wear headphones if they’re listening to music on their laptop or to turn the volume down on their radio.
Ever been really in the zone at work? Nothing seems to exist, but you and the work you’re doing. Suddenly, out of nowhere, Chatty Cathy pops by talking to you about something funny her kid did or something silly her cat did. Under normal circumstances this would be OK, but at this moment she’s taken you out of the zone. Now, you just wish her cat was here so you could toss it at her chatty face. Chatty Cathy’s don’t know when to be quiet and don’t know when it’s not an appropriate time to have a conversation.
Solution: Tell Chatty Cathy you’re busy at the moment: “Oh great story Cathy, but I’m actually in the middle of something important.” Express how busy you are and they should take the hint. Have a chat with Cathy when you aren’t busy to show her how you still like her when you aren’t busy.
Smelly Food Guy
You watch Smelly Food Guy go to the kitchen, open the fridge door and put his food in the microwave and that moment you brace yourself for the wave of that intoxicating bad food smell. For some reason, Smelly Food Guy lacks the proper smell receptors and enjoys eating pungent smelling food like fish, curry or Mexican food. Even worse, Smelly Food Guy is your neighbor and likes to eat at his desk.
Solution: If you want to insure your desk area is stench-free, invite Smelly Food Guy to eat outside with you. If this guy keeps bringing in smelly food a lot, and many coworkers are complaining, take the complaint to the boss.
Needy Nelson asks you for advice or assistance on a constant basis. At first, you feel great helping a fellow co-worker out, but at a certain point it becomes too much to handle. You have your own work to do and helping him takes a huge chunk of time out of your work schedule.
Solution: When you help out this person all the time, make sure to keep track of the emails and print out the one’s where you offered your expertise. This way, you can have them reference your previous conversations.
Annoying coworkers are distractions and affect productivity, but they’re still your co-workers and thus, they need to be approached in a polite manner. Once you’ve confronted these offenders of the workplace you’ll be glad you did. It’ll make you feel relieved and less stressed. The offenders will realize how their habits are bothering others and hopefully they’ll change them.