Annoying coworkers, difficult coworkers, interpersonal skills, soft skills, hard skills, tech skills
WORKPLACE SUCCESS / 14 December 2016
Improve your Interpersonal Skills When Dealing with These 5 Types of Annoying Co-workers
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Erica Hipp

Whether you’re a teacher, nurse, businessman, police officer, engineer, retail worker, or any profession, you have probably run into your fair share of annoying co-workers.

They might be a little too talkative, too much of a morning person, or maybe they’re just plain inconsiderate. But they’re also a great way for you to work on some interpersonal skills! Some day you may work with people from different cultures, backgrounds, etc. But you’ll always want to get along with them. To help you learn how to deal with those inescapable co-workers, we have outlined 5 of the most common types, and how to stay calm, cool, and collected when dealing with them. (Hopefully, none of them describe you!)



1. The REAL talker

This is the co-worker that constantly brags about their children, interrogates you about your private life, or just doesn’t know when to quit talking. You may find yourself getting immediately irritated with them and wanting to scream. However, a better and more beneficial way to deal with them might be to stay away.

If you don’t want to hear them, don’t get near them. If they sit in the cubicle right next to you and there’s no escape, try to drop subtle hints that you don’t want to talk. Leave headphones in (even if you’re not listening). And if they ask about your private life, just tell them you don’t discuss private matters at work. You have every right to keep your private life out of your work life. Lastly, try and remember that these people are probably genuinely very nice and just want to bond with you. It may be hard to remember that when they are constantly buzzing in your ear, but try and take a deep breath and remember it could be much worse…


2. The lazy one

Have you ever done a group project? This is the person that does the minimal amount (or maybe none of it) and they somehow talk their way out of trouble every single time. They’re the first to clock out and last to clock in sort of person.

How to Deal: Call them out-- they need to hear it! A little criticism can be beneficial and helpful in building effective work relationships.

And if that doesn’t work, go to the big guy- your boss. If it has happened enough, then you won’t seem like the snitch- you’re just being honest. Being lazy may have worked in high school, but in the real world, it won’t slide. TOP SECRET HIDDEN PHRASE ALERT! DM us the phrase "reach for the ProSky"


3. "Teacher’s Pet" or in this case, the Boss’s pet

This person might be the worst. They’re the one offering the boss a cup of Joe in the morning, the one telling you how to do your job better, or constantly just trying to build themselves up while diminishing the team effort. Don’t get me wrong, being competitive in the workplace is great, but it’s not the time to be a kiss up.

How to deal- First off, you’re probably not the only one annoyed with this person. Therefore, the best thing to do is probably let it go, because even the boss probably notices. Here’s another tip- try and look at this person in a positive light. Yes, they might make you bite your lip with irritation, but they also might inspire you to try and move up in the workplace- or they might even have some good advice for you!


4. The rude or inconsiderate one

This co-worker comes in different forms; they may be the one that constantly interrupts everyone else, they might leave a mess in the break room, make inappropriate jokes, or maybe they’re grumpy all day. The best way to deal with a co-worker like this is to attack the issue head on. If they interrupt conversations, pause and tell them that this is a private conversation, or that you specifically wanted to know another person’s feedback. If they leave a mess in the break room, tell them. As grown adults, people should know how to clean up after themselves. And, if they are always grumpy-- just let them be, if you have tried connecting with them, then maybe they are just not a people person. Remember- you may run into different types of people and you have to learn that not all of them function the same. Some grumps work better alone! Here are some other tips on how you can instantly connect with anyone! 


5. The LIAR

This is the one who preaches one thing but is the complete opposite. Maybe they claim to be more qualified than you, and act like a boss when in reality you are just as qualified. To deal with a coworker like this, it pays to NOT confront them. In most cases when someone has lied, the truth will reveal itself. They claim to be an expert in Excel? Well, let them take on a project that requires it. The truth will come out eventually, and there is no need to create too much drama!


These co-workers may get on your last nerve, but like anything life, they should be treated as a learning experience. Having experience working with diverse people is GREAT on a resume. That can totally count as a “soft skill” and something that employers love to see. Don’t forget to add it on your next job application and see what happens! 

Have you had a coworker nightmare? Is there something you think we missed? Leave a comment below and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Thanks for reading!