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23 days ago by Clive Dunne
Difficult Co Worker

I think it is safe to say that we have all encountered situations in our working environments, of colleagues whose main aim in life seems to be to push our buttons and drive us crazy. This can be quite annoying to say the least. However, in more serious cases this constant annoyance can lead to stress and unhappiness at work, and ultimately result in an individual leaving employment because of it.

We all know some of these co-workers, they tell you everything that goes on in their personal lives, constantly complain, are serial advisers, chatters and gossips, correct your work continually and argue with everyone. Then there are the more serious individuals who are just arrogant and mean. Most co-workers act professionally and accept our boundaries and manage to get the hint when they go too far, but some unfortunately do not, and this requires a different more structured approach.

It might be an idea if you can’t avoid a difficult co-worker to approach the individual directly. Do so in a friendly & non-confrontational manner and explain to them that you find their actions uncomfortable to deal with constantly. If this does not work or the situation deteriorates further, then approach the person you report to and explain your issue, again in a friendly informal manner. If this still does not work, then ensure you are recording every occurrence in a diary. You can then formally report the situation to your direct manager, the human resource department, or to a member of the senior management team for them to resolve.

You will know yourself if the situation is serious enough to formally report and don’t be afraid to do so. Most of us work hard to earn a living and we should not have to put up with people giving us an undeserved hard time. So don’t accept it and approach the individual first, 9 times out of 10 this friendly approach will be enough to resolve your woes, if not, then escalate.