Everyone has heard the statistics before. It is something like four billion hours in a person’s life is going to be spent at work. For some people, that number is even higher. For example, take a firefighter. That guy is not working a normal 9-to-5 job. If there is a fire blazing in the mountains, then chances are he will be on the clock for three consecutive days before he sees his family. So, this goes to show that work is a totally time-consuming, life altering part of a grown-up’s life.
This may explain why it is so easy to hate people that you work with. For anyone that spends a lot of time with a person or group of people, inevitably someone is going to get on your nerves. If the situation is really bad, it does not even take much for that person to squeeze whatever patience you have left right out of your body. Sometimes the situation can get so desperate that the next time they say something to you, you’re going to take your pen and jab it right into their neck and not even feel bad about it.
No one is immune from this. Even a stay at home parent has to deal with this. Just ask any mom or dad how much they enjoy working on a classroom project with that one jerk member of the PTA and you will see the veins start to pop in their neck when they talk about it. Even those who are in business for themselves have to deal with customers and vendors that make their stomachs churn every time they think about them. It’s just the downside of dealing with people.
So, take a break from Googling your own name at work and enjoy the 15 types of people we can’t stand in the workplace.
15. The Socialite
Not everyone loves their job. For some people, they are just in the job for a short period until they can finish school, buy a home, have a baby, or move away from whatever hellhole they are living in. The problem is that even if a person does not love their job, they still have to actually do it if they want to get paid. The other problem is that there are only so many hours in the day to make these things happen. This means that people have to learn to get efficient with their jobs, prioritize, and execute as often as they can, even if they want to kill everyone they work with.
Unfortunately, the Socialite has absolutely no concept of time. His watch has no hands on it and the sand in his hourglass has completely evaporated. He is the guy that will corner someone and regale them with the stories about how their dog ate something bad and was sick all weekend, no matter how boring the story is. It won’t matter how much has to get done or what the consequences are for not meeting a deadline, the Socialite is a super villain who has mastered the art of killing your time slowly.
14. The Suck-Up
Moving ahead any job requires a bit of sacrifice. It is one thing if a person wants to just push papers at their desk for 30 years, retire, and collect a pension. They won’t ever have to worry about doing anything other than the task at hand. For others, if they want to move into management or have more responsibility, they are going to have to go beyond the call a duty a bit to make that happen.
For the suck up, this person is driven less by ambition and more by their own insecurity. They know that if they kiss just enough ass, they will get silly things like a slightly bigger office, praise in a meeting, or even a small raise. The worst part is what these people gain pales in comparison to what they are giving up. Things like their self-esteem, the respect of their peers, and the ability to walk through a crowded room without everyone wanting to punch them are things that they lose in an effort to barely move up the ladder.
13. The Middle Manager
Running an organization can be difficult. For anyone that has run or been a part of a large organization, there are a lot of moving parts. Human resources, technology, talent, and sales are parts of just about any organization of any size. Those at the top are responsible for making all of those areas successful, but usually have to delegate these matters to people below them. The decision makers give these people the power to make decisions so they can focus on more important matters.
The hard part is that some of these people, often referred to as the Middle Manager, usually let this power get to their head. Just like when your mom told your big sister that she was in charge when her and dad went out to see a movie, the Middle Manager is the kind of person that swells up with an inflated sense of themselves for no good reason. Dealing with them can be impossible because they are power-mad, but without any real power. What is even worse is that they will be the first to tattle-tell as soon as someone does something wrong, making themselves look good. The cousin of the Suck-Up, the Middle Manager can be one of the most difficult people to work with.
12. The Slob
If a person is lucky, they will have their own office to work in. The office can either be in their own house or in an office building depending on the work situation. The beauty of that is that a person can feng shui the hell out of their own office as much as they want. They can organize their staplers and pens just the way they like and no one can even say anything about it really.
The worst is when there is an office-free environment. For example, a police officer does not usually have an office because their patrol car is their office. If they have to work with the Slob, then their office becomes a replica of a pig sty they have to work in on the regular. For people that work in shared spaces or in cubicle space, the Slob is an ever-present annoyance. Everyone knows the Slob, too. They are the guy, and it’s almost always a guy, who eats three quarter pounders for lunch and leaves the wrappers and food all over the place. He dresses like he has been sleeping outside for a few weeks and has a tendency to smell like an old skunk for no reason. The Slob will turn any situation into a disgusting one.
11. The Bully
Elementary and high schools have made a lot of efforts over the past decade to snuff out bullying. The reason is because, truthfully, bullying is something that has driven people to low self-esteem, low self-worth, and even suicide. Bullies usually have some sort of insecurity that they use to take out on other people. They pick their targets carefully, being sure not to find people who could actually stand up to them. Then they try to have their way. It’s usually kid stuff and most people grow out of it….except when they don’t.
The Bully is the guy who was either a) bullied themselves or b) was always a bully. This is the man or woman who makes loud comments about how you dress, walk, talk, or eat. They do these openly rude things and take total advantage of the fact that most people are not willing to slug a coworker in front of everyone like they would slug a bully on the schoolyard. Just rest assured that, like a child bully, they are crying themselves to sleep every night. In the meantime, if you spot this person, keep your distance.
10. Negative Ned/Nancy
Staying positive at work can be a challenge. Even if a person loves their job, there are going to be difficult days. Also, at one point or another, has royally screwed up at work and everyone found out about it, making for a really, really long day. Perhaps they missed a deadline or ruined some project that makes going into work dreadful. It is possible that the company just changed a policy that makes going to work a little bit more difficult. Regardless, being positive all of the time is not easy, but it can be crucial to keeping a healthy mindset.
Of course, do not tell this to Negative Ned or Negative Nancy. Usually, these fools can find the negative in even the best situations. The boss said that he is giving everyone a goose that craps golden eggs? Negative Ned will question the quality of the gold. The company moving its operations to Miami, Florida and giving everyone a giant raise? Negative Nancy will complain Miami has too much water. Dwayne Johnson make a personal appearance and tell Ned how proud he was of their work? Those two will comment on how Johnson’s shirt was too “shiny.” They find the negative in everything and they need to be quarantined immediately.
9. Dead Weight
As mentioned previously, work is actual work. This means that even if a person hates or loves their job, there is usually going to be some level of work they are going to have to put into the job to get it done. For a lot of jobs, teamwork is required to get things done. Rarely does a lawyer work on an assignment by themselves. Even they have a team of people and resources they rely upon. Writers have editors. Athletes have coaches and teammates. Basically, the world works by getting things done through other people.
This sentiment does not ring true at all for Dead Weight. The hardest part with Dead Weight is that he or she can be Dead Weight and any other member on this list. Dead Weight can be Middle Manager. Dead Weight can be a Pushover. Dead Weight can be the Slob. Dead Weight is the person, no matter what they are responsible for, who cannot get out of their own way to get the job done. They don’t answer texts or emails about the project. Their work is totally shoddy. They’re indifferent. Everyone has to carry their weight. They are like the friend who got too drunk at a party and didn’t have a ride home. Everyone has to carry them all the way home on foot after a long night and they do not even realize how much everyone hates them.
8. The Overachiever
It is important to reiterate that there is nothing wrong with trying to get ahead at work. What would the world be if doctors and scientists never wanted to get a promotion every once in awhile? Chances are the world would have never found cures to anything and people would still think the moon was made of cheese. Getting ahead is the sign of a strong economy and a democratic society working well.
But with anything, with the good comes the bad. The bad comes in the form of the Overachiever. This individual usually had the best grades in school and their mom told them that they were meant for something special. To keep her happy, this person will make sure that they take on every assignment, turn in every project before deadline, and try to reap every award available at work. This is true even the award is for “Most Awards.” The Overachiever will have it.
What the Overachiever will not tell anyone is how much they have mortgaged their lives to look good at work. They stay up extra late to finish projects. They decline dates with people they like so they can work more hours. They ignore their family to check their cell phone when an email comes through. They become so possessed with achievement that they forget that life is meant for living, not just working.
7. The Gossip
Every person has been new at work at one point or another. Usually, people are really nice to the new person because a fresh face at a place like work can be really nice. For once, there is a person who is not involved in the drama or infighting that is inevitable in every group of people. The new person has a different perspective that can be nice and fun all at the same time. For most people, even if they do not get to meet the new person right away, they try to get around to it eventually to help them feel welcome.
However, the Gossip is like an alien from another planet. The Gossip is normally the first person to introduce themselves to the new person because, along with a new perspective, a new person brings new drama. The Gossip is destined to get right to the bottom of it and spread that person’s private information around like Santa Claus spreads presents at Christmastime. Get to know the Gossip, tell them that your life is 100% normal, and stay away from them forever.
6. Captain Know-It-All
In school, there were also one or two people who just had the answers to every question. As kids, they would raise their hands in the air, stand on their desk, and yell, “Oooooh, call on me!” at the top of their lungs. For whatever reason, the answer to the question is just burning the insides of their brains and if they do not get it out there is a chance that they may just faint. They are kids so it’s all forgiven.
It is not forgiven for adults. Captain Know-It-All is the person who never grew out of the bad habit of having the answer to the question that nobody asked. It does not matter if the question does not pertain to their department or job, they will raise their hands in the air, stand on their desk, and yell, “Ooooh, call on me!” not caring that they are now 30 years old; not 13.
5. The Pushover
Being gutsy at work is, in itself, gutsy. For example, most people would rather quit a job then have to stand up to their boss. The reason is because the boss is usually the person who is in charge of the employee’s daily bread and, if the employee is smart, they are not going to rock that boat. If a person has a family to feed, they will put up with even more crap. In the very least, they know their family is going to be taken care of no matter what they have to deal with.
But everyone has their limit. A boss that says things that are racist, sexist, or does illegal stuff will usually get called out by most anyone. However, the Pushover will gladly stand by and let everything burn before they speak up. If this person is also a Middle Manager, find a new job right now. This person is so afraid of conflict that they will sail you down the river before they ever defend an employee or themselves and they will make work even worse than it normally is.
4. The Complainer
The Complainer is a very close cousin of Negative Ned and Nancy. With Negative Ned and Nancy, those individuals will usually bitch silently about things that they do not like. They can just kind of be a drain on productivity and happiness in the workplace. Often times, they are just harmless jerks that most people try to avoid.
The Complainer is just like them, but worse. The Complainer will not only complain about the working conditions, but they will complain about everything. Computer running a little too slow? Count on the Complainer to make it a big deal. Had a typographical error? The Complainer will make sure that everyone knows how much typos bother them. Server take a little long with the food on a business trip? The Complainer will be sure to let their boss know. They can easily be spotted because they start every sentence with, “You know what I think…”
This individual is usually the most self-destructive of the group. In their efforts to try to let the world know everything that is wrong, they usually lose whatever bit of credibility they have built up the minute they open their mouths. Staying free of this person forever is the only way to ensure job security.
3. Mr. Popular
The best part about growing up is that popularity becomes virtually insignificant. In fact, some of the richest and most successful people on earth were gigantic nerds in high school that no one ever talked to. Ever think that Bill Gates was the captain of the football team? Doubt it. Was Jay Z voted Prom King? There is very little chance. However, after high school is where people can learn more about themselves in the real world and the more comfortable they get with themselves, the more success they have.
Mr. (or Mrs.) Popular is usually one of two people. They are either the person who was totally unpopular in high school and hated it or they were the person who was really popular in high school and loved it. Regardless, they have yet to let go of this sense that popularity is important in the workplace and will work extremely hard to fit in. This is the person who tries to tell the coolest jokes, they are the ones who throw the holiday parties, and pay for everyone’s drink. They are so desperate to be liked that they will make themselves look like fools in the process.
2. The Troublemaker
There are two kinds of troublemakers: the good kind and the bad kind. First, the good kind:
Cesar Chavez is the good kind. If you haven’t opened up a book lately, Chavez is a hero in worker’s rights. More specifically, Chavez was a Mexican-American man who was subject to and saw the abuses of farm workers throughout the Southwest. See, many farmers paid migrant workers extremely low wages and subjected them to conditions that were subhuman all in an effort to get more fruit picked. Chavez helped organize these workers and start reform for better conditions all around. He was a troublemaker, but he was the good kind of troublemaker.
Then, there’s the bad kind. This is the guy who has become so pissed off that the water cooler is broken that he is going to walk out and wants everyone to come with him. This is also the guy who found a new job somewhere else and believes it is totally acceptable to take pictures of his junk and email it to the boss. Oh, this guy also enjoys drinking on the job and pressures everyone to join in. For people who still care about their jobs, the troublemaker is the worst kind of poison that can sink a career.
1. The Underminer
The previous 14 people on the list are awful. Usually, there is something in their past or the personality that makes them behave the way they do. Because they are so common in the workplace, they are really easy to spot and stay away from. Most people know that they simply cannot trust those people and gladly keep their distance.
The hardest person to stay away from is the Underminer. The reason is because the Underminer hides out in plain sight, like one of those snakes who are the same color as the foliage around it. Most people never know who the Underminer is in the office because they are so shifty. Picture that liquid metal guy from Terminator 2 where he is impossible to see until he is stabbing you right in the back.
Usually, the Underminer works hard to gain everyone’s trust. Think Frank Underwood from House of Cards. This individual wins the trust of the bosses and other employees all the while gathering dirt to use against everyone to further their own self-interest. They spread information like the Gossip, have ambition like the Overachiever, and cause as much damages as the Bully. They are like the Optimus Prime of workplace baddies so if you find yourself subject to one, take note and keep away.