Blog: Irritants to be avoided @workplace

Life @ Work

Irritants to be avoided @workplace

In this light-hearted take, read how to tackle the over-enthusiastic irritants at work.
Irritants to be avoided @workplace

When we work in an organization, we are bound to interact with other people. However, there will always be some people (read irritants) present in an environment who will try their best to disrupt our productivity and mental harmony. It is best to avoid these irritants before it’s too late! Let’s see who these are and how to avoid them!

The talkative (read ‘over’) ones

These people love and live to talk. Period. They can literally talk about anything under the planet which most of the times is distantly related to the work. They project themselves as domain experts of most of the topics and take great pride in sharing their uninvited views. They are immune to people’s blazing stances and repeated warnings and prefer to continue with their ‘talk show’. During meetings, they believe that it’s their duty to make a point (read invalid) after every fact shared.  

Habitat: These can be seen on someone else’s desk or in the cafeteria chattering away with full glory.

Warning: They can snatch your productive hours in a jiffy with their never-ending stories and can even bore you to death! Spending more time with them can make you the latest recipient of other’s ‘blaring gazes’! Keep a saridon handy as their boisterousness can trigger a mighty headache!

Strategy to avoid them: Until or unless you have Harry Potter’s magical robe which can make you invisible, you should hide yourself behind the pile of files on your desk, and if your desk is clean (though the chances are bleak) then you should just slip under the desk or fit yourself in one the big drawers!  Also, never ever compromise with the quality of earplugs to protect your ears, the damage can be irreversible.  Still if nothing works then you should eventually excuse yourself on the pretext of some urgent meeting, lined up in another 10 seconds. You can of course ask them to utilise those precious 10 seconds!

The Gossip mongers

They are in fact the descendants of the ‘talkative’ category people but they differ with respect to the content of their chatter. They are mostly interested in other’s lives and love to cook up stories with huge dollops of spice. Hugely inspired from movies, and drama, they constantly look for thrills and excitement that can quench their thirst for amusement. They have the knack of converting anything petty into something outrageous. And they take no time to spread that ‘outrageous’ piece of news to the others significant in the organization. Words like ‘respect for privacy’, ‘personal encroachment’ don’t exist in their dictionary. Riding low on sensitivity and high on sadism, they can brilliantly feign their innocence when confronted. 

Habitat: Mostly seen in the office corners, whispering with a small bunch of people. Warning: Beware! They can give you sleepless nights and jeopardize your image by spreading false rumors about you. You might get those looks of ‘suspicion’ and ‘bewilderment’ from others when you enter the office.

Strategy to avoid them:  Ignorance is bliss! Be a braveheart and don’t get disheartened by their false stories. Just shush them with your great work which will be the best vendetta! 

Boss pleasers

Another set of irritants who spend most of their life trying to please their boss/super boss with weird yet innovative tactics. From giving the nicest (read fake) compliments to their bosses (even when they look their worst best), to giving expensive gifts to agreeing with all their commandments, they are capable of going to any extent to make their boss happy. They are so influenced with their boss that they gradually steal their style and demeanour and transform themselves into mini clones of their bosses. 

Habitat: You can mostly spot them following their bosses. Infact, they can fight like a true soldier just to get that coveted seat next to their boss, especially in the meetings. 

Warning: Since they are very close to the boss/superboss, their one complaint might land you in trouble. You can also experience some unfairness when your boss gives them preferential treatment despite you working very hard.

Strategy to avoid them: Since higher stakes are involved, don’t ignore them completely but be wise and maintain a neutral (if not good) relation with these people.

The pseudo confidants

Being a gullible soul, you genuinely trust few people in the office whom you consider as your ‘close friends’. You share and discuss almost everything with them - from discussing your bosses’ attire to disappointment with your increment to unfair treatment meted out to you. But soon you realize that all this information is being leaked, for which you are being scorned and reprimanded. You are still wondering how it happened--however it is too late now as damage is already done!  You can never gauge the ‘modus operandi’ of ‘pseudo confidants’-prima facie, they look extremely reliable and genuine but deep inside they mostly devise ways to pull you down. They will never miss an opportunity to backstab you for their own benefit- and that’s their easiest way to gain their bosses confidence. 

Warning: This type can get very lethal and you can even get fired if they spill all your dark secrets (especially if it is related to your boss and work)!

Strategy to avoid them: Try some meditation and learn the art of holding secrets. Trust very few people in the organization and go to the right channel (HR or immediate boss) to discuss your deepest grudges and naggings!

Sadly, the categories presented above are not exhaustive and go way beyond these four. It requires enough valour and manoeuvre to withstand such irritants at work. However, with oodles of patience and little tips & tricks, you can certainly avoid these and emerge as a winner! Good luck people! 

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Topics: Life @ Work, Watercooler

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