Top 10 Most Annoying Office Habits of All Time

annoying.jpgIn Letterman-like fashion, I am presenting the most horrifying, offensive and incessant co-worker behaviors that infect the office and kill your productivity.

#10. Gum chewing. Whether it occurs just at inappropriate times or constantly throughout the day, gum chewing can be a major distraction. The constant “smack, smack, smack” of your boss’ mouth is not only irritating but unprofessional.

#9. Smelly food. Nothing distracts more than a co-worker with a strong smelling lunch. A ban on microwaved fish should be instituted immediately in offices nationwide.

#8. Clipping fingernails. Aside from the bothersome clinking sound of the clippers, you must also guard against nail clippings flying at you as you walk by. Personal grooming habits are best kept personal and have no place in an office environment.

# 7. Bad coffee breath. A five-minute meeting with a foul-smelling co-worker can feel like an overnight retreat. Skip offering them gum (see annoying habit #10) and go straight for the mints instead.

# 6. Unsolicited Humming. Sitting next to a budding American Idol is not fun, no matter how great a voice your co-worker might have. There are some great noise-cancelling headphones on the market nowadays that are surprisingly affordable.

# 5. King of forwards. Every office has one. The one person who just doesn’t seem to get that people don’t want to clutter their inboxes with pictures of dogs dressed up as Yoda or an image of Tweety Bird made entirely out of ‘@’ symbols.

# 4. Really personal conversations. I believe that a company is a community of employees and that co-workers are almost like a second family. That said—not everyone wants to know about the wart on Marty’s foot or how Carol’s daughter is involved with a married man. We shouldn’t have to abandon our personal lives at the office, but we don’t need to put it all out there either.

# 3. Working while sick. No one wants to sit next to someone who is constantly sniffling, sneezing and coughing their germs all over the office. Folks need to starting taking sick days when they’re sick instead of saving them up for the family vacation to Mexico.

# 2. Not re-filling the water-cooler or making fresh coffee. Common courtesy is slowing disappearing from corporate offices. It should be a mandatory requirement in every company handbook that the person who drinks the last cup should have to replace the pot.

# 1. Inappropriate ringtones. There is nothing more exasperating than sitting in a meeting and all of a sudden the “Thong Song” starts playing. Vibrate is the only acceptable ring for the workplace but at the very least, ringtones that can be heard in the office should never include the words “biatch” or “ho.”

If you work in an office where you experience one or more of the above behaviors, you have my sympathies and hopefully some good anti-bacterial lotion and an iPod.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button


22 responses »

  1. Those are indeed the most annoying habits from co-workers. Not everyone has a sense of decency anymore. They take for granted many of these things that they expect from an instant gratification world. Someone should write a blueprint on a code of ethics in the office.

  2. — Not washing after using the bathroom. I hate the smell of urea on people!!

    — Slurping with a straw, or eating with your mouth open.

    — Besides annoying ringtones, constant talking on a phone, cell or landline, that is neither an emergency nor business-related. A 5-minute checkup on your kid coming home from school is fine, but keep it short!!!

    — Wearing inappropriate attire. If you work in an environment that allows tees and jeans and least…please, no spaghetti straps or tanks, miniskirts or mini-shorts, flip-flops, etc!!

  3. good list – let me add a few more. the first one i had to ask a guy to go on mute 3 times today because it was bothering me so much.

    1. heavy breathing into conference call – i mean come on either go on mute or stop breathing!
    2. using speaker phone in a cube area – um…duh.

    jersey – im with you on the attire. while im a younger corporate person and dont subscribe to the suit and tie attire…or even khakis and polos for that matter. hats and flip flops…come on. those are usually the people trying to hard anyway. just go with some cool jeans, shoes, and a shirt and youll be fine!

  4. That sums up everything I guess, fortunately for me I would probably work in a laboratory, so no food, no iPod but still germs though.

  5. That gum one struck a responsive chord. Just today a co-worker waved and smiled, and as she did so, I spied a huge pink wad of gum sort of hanging there. The clothing part makes sense to me as well. Where I work, the administration does not like denim in any way, shape, or form. I love it, and yet the people in charge are the ones who decide on my compensation, special projects (or not), possible promotions, etc., so most of the time I adhere to the guidelines. If I “stray,” it’s because it’s a Friday or because I’ve somehow worked the ensemble into a professional look.

  6. certainly cant miss the ever famous “reply to all” people…those who think everyone wants to know what they think! annoying!!!

  7. Pingback: My Global Career » Blog Archive » Are You Having a Brazen Career?

  8. Personal questions, definitely!No politics please!!
    I am passionate about politics but I don’t want to hear my coworkers asking about my view any more. Please don’t!

  9. This article seems to definitely hit it on the nail when it comes to bad habits at the office work place. Now that we have walls that are no more than 5 feet high anymore sound travels anywhere.

    What irks me the most is when a coworker talks on the cell phone and doesn’t take the courtesy to step outside the office for a few minutes to handle their call, especially when it pertains to the awesome party they had last night or how much beer to buy for tonight.

    Other annoying things though a little more rare are the people who smash their keyboards hard when they’re typing and the instant message beeps that come through with their speakers on. If you’re IMing than there are other ways to get notified of a new message coming through that don’t involve noise.

  10. I shared facing desks with a guy who would pick his nose and wipe it under the desk
    and his wife would call him twenty times a day and I never wanted to touch his phone – people would say ‘answer his damn phone!!’ because he was too stupid to set up the voice mail – no way I would touch that snot covered phone so I sometimes would unplug it when he wasn’t around

  11. Here’s another one: on Friday, especially before a holiday, “so, got any great plans for the weekend?…so, what are you doing this weekend?”). This question gets asked over and over and over again and it’s beyond intrusive-who cares??????? Monday comes: “So, what did you do this weekend?” Enough–none of your business!!!!!

  12. Pingback: office: these habits don’t make the lists | urban bohemian

  13. sorry–accidentally hit a key above–

    I was saying, as I type this, a girl next to me is chewing her gum REALLY loud, I’m in the library. It’s so obnoxious! It’s making me hate her right now. I hope a black hole appears a sucks her into the swirling vortex.
    That being said, here are some office horrors: GIGGLING GIRLS! flirty girls, creepy old men (also supervisors) who hit on giggling girls, office romances out in the open (that lovey-dovey crap you can’t get away from), rude people, people who cough without covering their mouths, people who don’t wash their hands, people who act like they own the planet…
    You get the idea!

  14. You’re all full of yourselves! Just accept these things and learn to block them out. All of these things are irrational annoyancesl You can ignore sounds/odors/spam forwards, etc. Excluding the sick one, but maybe they can’t afford to stay home, put yourself in their shoes.

    • No, these are not irrational annoyances. Are you saying people have the right to do whatever they want at work? When you are at home, then you can do whatever disgusting behaviors you want. But when you are in a professional environment like an office, decent human beings are supposed to show consideration for others who have to sit near them and work with them. I’m glad it’s so easy for you to just magically ignore 50 annoying sounds, smells and other unnecessary nuisances. It’s not that easy for everyone. Try putting yourself in OUR shoes and imagine being annoyed 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, by some oblivious person carelessly smacking their gum all day long to the point that you can’t concentrate. That is rude, unnecessary, and selfish, and this kind of behavior does not belong in the workplace. Stop making excuses for rude people, please.

  15. When people have to talk so loud, like they are talking to someone in the next state..take it in your office and shut the door

  16. Pingback: Nightmare Co-workers in a Call Center | Call Center Conduct

  17. Pingback: The Top 10 Annoying Habits Men Need To Stop Doing -

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s