The 11 most irritating people you’ll meet during your first job
Agh! The working world approaches. After months of dodgy CV-tweaking, soul-destroying applications and terrifying interviews, you'll land something. Everybody does. What that something is, though, is a completely different matter.
And then there's the people you'll meet. There'll be people with body odour issues, people who don't seem to know what Google is (and just *have* to ask you) and those whose job title appears to be 'patience-tester'. They're bad enough... but here are eleven of our least favourite co-workers who most of us have to endure...
1. The one who takes courtesies too far
It's Monday morning. You're tired - but that doesn't mean you won't be polite (not yet, anyway). You turn your new colleague and, as a courtesy, ask how their weekend was. The answer you're looking for is two words: 'fine, thanks', maybe 'fun, thanks'. You could even tolerate three words: 'Great, thanks - you?'
What you aren't expecting is a detailed account of their brunch, or their afternoon nap, or how they thought they'd drunk too much but - shocker - actually hadn't. This person is master of the 'You had to be there' story, and probably doesn't mind that they conclude the five minutes they've wasted of your life with 'So, to answer your question, nothing much...' They're new, like you, they just don't realise what 'being polite at work' is.
2. The show off
They treat every meeting, presentation and water-cooler encounter as the ideal moment to remind you of their qualifications, experience and recent achievements. They are a walking LinkedIn profile, constantly looking for endorsements - and for a chance of immediate promotion. Chances are, deep down, they think they were hired for the wrong job and deserve better. That or they have a serious gambling problem and desperately need a pay rise.
3. The credit stealer
You've done the research, edited the copy, formatted the files. They come in, give one brief idea and then loudly involve your boss. As they run through their shitty little contribution, they begin to point out other aspects of your work, while throwing around insidious, creeping phrases like 'well, we've been working together on...' Suddenly, they've convinced your boss they did the lion's share of it all - what?!
Truly expert credit-stealers will throw the occasional, patronising comment which manages to both praise you and put you down: they are an expert with the back-handed compliment. For instance, 'You know, <<your name here>> really did a fab job, especially considering how little time they put into it."
4. The one who refuses to help with anything
It's either too late, they haven't got enough time, the internet gremlins are against them or 'why don't you just do it yourself?' ... no matter what you ask or how you ask, it won't get done. They've always got something to organise, even if there's no evidence of it.
5. The one who thinks they’re too good for this job
You've worked - nay, slaved - for this job. You shook so hard during the interview your bones made a clinking noise. This company, this job: it's what you've been dreaming of. You're practically working for nothing and you couldn't care less... and then this objectionable individual saunters into the room, probably sighing louder than any one person has the right to sigh, complaining that everything is boring. It's all tedious, they can't understand who would want to work here, they're desperate to leave (you agree it would be best for them...), they have this other job lined up and blah blah blah. Whatever it is, they treat this job as far, far beneath them and aren't afraid to show it. Morale killer, much?
...and of course, what makes it worse is that you can't help but think they were damned lucky to paid for whatever they do in the first place, because they're definitely not good at it.
6. The one who has no idea what they’re doing
There are a lot of people who make out they hate their job as a cover for the fact they have no idea what they're up to. Better not to do anything than attempt to try something and fail, right?
The person who genuinely has no idea what they're doing is far harder to spot, though. They aren't the office joker, or the one shouted at by the boss. They're more often sat in a corner, staring intently at the screen and doing occasional bursts of loud - too loud - typing which doesn't sound like they could be writing anything coherent at all. What they don't realise, of course, is that you can see their screen reflected in the window.
7. The gossip
At first, it's funny. Then it becomes uncomfortable. And then, horrifyingly, you realise you're actually kinda looking forward to hearing some more... but in truth, a gossip is just a stirrer. Best avoided - unless a bottle of wine is nearby.
8. The one who's never angry to your face
They're sweet to you. Uncomfortably so. If your ideas conflict? It's no problem, they insist, they just politely but firmly disagree with you.
...and then the furious email arrives, stuffed full of capital letters and needlessly long, aggressive words. They keep it so professional and cold, it's practically frozen your laptop. Either than, or your boss pulls you in for a quiet word because they've said something.
9. The one who's *always* angry to your face
Forgot an attachment on an email? Prepare for a hand slammed on the desk. Were held up in the morning? They'll let the entire office know, right there and then. But hey, at least you know where you stand with this one.
10. The just-too-friendly
They invite you to lunch on the first day. Unbeknown to you, they decided within moments you'll be best friends for life - and there's absolutely nothing you can do. Good luck!
11. The one who's always sick
You're ill? No, by all means, sharing is caring...