By Cynthia M Piccolo
We all have coworkers who push our buttons. To find out what some of these buttons are, we polled individuals who work in a variety of fields.
And as you read these examples, remember the lines from English playwright John Gay's The Beggar's Opera:
The coworker who constantly – and sloppily – eats at her desk, then wonders why her keyboard doesn't work.
When you censure the Age
Be cautious and sage,
Lest the Courtiers offended should be:
If you mention Vice or Bribe,
'Tis so pat to all the Tribe;
Each cries - That was levell'd at me.
The coworker who walks around without shoes, and clips their toenails at their desk.
Coworkers who don't wipe up after themselves in the staff kitchen or lunchroom.
Coworkers who leave tea bags sitting in the sink in the staff kitchen.
Coworkers who leave filthy plates, bowls, utensils, and cups lying around, which offends on a visual, olfactory, and hygienic level.
The male coworker who uses the single-toilet women's washroom because he thinks the men's washroom is filthy and disgusting.
"Anybody and everybody who doesn't wash their hands after using the washroom!"
"That person who never flushes the toilet!"
The person who pees on the toilet seat.
The person who primps in front of the bathroom mirror for an extended period of time, gassing everyone in the bathroom with perfume and/or hair spray, and preventing people from getting to the sink to wash their hands.
People who leave hair in the washroom sink.
People who are too special to pick up the paper towel that they dropped on the floor.
Gone With the Wind
Coworkers who "borrow" office supplies from your desk, leaving you penless, calculatorless, etc. If they could take your desktop PC, they would.
Coworkers who swap office supplies with you – e.g. the person who puts her empty stapler on your desk and takes your full stapler.
Coworkers who take the last of anything – brochures from the display, milk or coffee from the kitchen, paper towels – and don't replace it!
Attitudes Towards Work
"When people come in late, but leave on time. Like leaving right on the dot at 5pm. Especially when they had obviously stopped working about 15-30 minutes prior to leaving!"
The coworker who is too free with self-disclosure, e.g. "she likes to torture everyone in the department with her tale of woe about how her affair with the married man isn't going well."
Coworkers who volunteer to help after the work has been done.
Coworkers who don't follow instructions.
"Every new contract and permanent hire in our (recruitment) company, which has several dozen employees, wants a corner office. They ask, even though it's obvious that the building has only four corners and the corner offices are occupied."
"People who want an office with a window, then keep the window shades down all the time!"
The Interpersonally Challenged
"People who insist on taking the wind out of your sails by 'one-upping' your accomplishments at work."
The coworker who gets in your face (so close you can smell her breath) and invades your personal space, including hugging and touching you.
"The coworker who makes fun of everything I say or do. If I cough, she'll mimic it and make additional rude noises. Is that supposed to be funny? Are we in kindergarten?"
When the conversation stops as soon as you enter the room.
When a coworker doesn't answer questions.
When a coworker doesn't listen to the answers given!
The apple polisher (to put it politely) coworker with the fake laugh.
The coworker who lacks tact, e.g. "Hey – you look like sh*t today. Are ya not feelin' well?"