The 9 Worst Types of Coworkers

by Staff - Original publish date: December 4, 2013

Which Coworkers are the Most Annoying?

Coworkers. Good ones can be the reason you stay at a job, while horrible colleagues can make every day in the office a living hell from which you’d like nothing more than to escape.

If you’ve spent a few years in the ranks of the working class, you’ve no doubt experienced a cornucopia of annoying coworkers. But have you ever wondered which ones are the worst of the bunch? We did, and so I drew on my own experiences and polled other workers to come up with the nine most annoying types of coworkers on the planet.

See if you recognize anyone from your office (or yourself) on this list.

9. The Bully

Bullying has been a hot issue among teenagers and on school playgrounds across America as of late. But even though it doesn’t get the same play in the media, office bullies are alive and well.

You know the type. They walk around like they’re your boss even though technically they were hired after you and you have the same job title. But that doesn’t stop them from belittling you at every turn and publicly degrading your ideas during brainstorming sessions and team meetings.

Most bullies knock it off when you stand up to them, so take him/her aside and let them know you’re bothered by their behavior. If that doesn’t work, it might be time to get HR involved.

8. The Complainer

Nothing stops success and the free-flowing of good ideas like someone who constantly complains about everything.

The Complainer’s gripes know no bounds. They’ll complain about the boss, the company, the workload, the fact that there were only plain doughnuts left in the cafeteria this morning – you name it, they’ll complain about it. The negativity is constant, and the mood of the team (and potentially productivity) will be brought down.

7. The Underminer

This annoying coworker is especially frustrating because he/she will often feign friendship and then stab you in the back five minutes later.

Did you discuss a great idea with a coworker only to see that person steal it and use it as their own? Are you missing meetings because your coworker leading a project keeps “forgetting” to email you the invites? If so, you’re probably dealing with The Bully’s sneaky and conniving cousin – The Underminer.

The most important thing to remember here is that The Underminer sees you as a threat and is genuinely scared of you. Try to keep that in mind and use it to your advantage when dealing with him/her.

6. The Dead Weight

Every coworker should bring unique strengths and special skills to the table. If you’re working in a team environment, you’ll likely use each individual’s strong points for the benefit of the team to get optimal results.

Unless you’re dealing with Dead Weight.

Simply put, The Dead Weight is useless and shows no desire to do anything but the bare minimum. Unhappy in their jobs and checked out long ago, these people have no interest in succeeding at work because all they want to do is just enough not to get fired so they can keep collecting a paycheck. Unfortunately, you usually deal with these people by picking up their slack.

5. The Type A

The polar opposite of The Dead Weight, Type A coworkers are equally annoying at the other end of the spectrum.

Instead of not wanting to do anything, these perfectionists feel the need to do everything themselves. They are total control freaks who feel the only way to do something right is to do it their way. Type A people tend to ignore alternative points of view, and while their bossy ways might make them high-performers, no one else enjoys dealing with them.

4. The One-Upper

You think your accomplishment was a game-changer? I guarantee you The One-Upper did something better. And he’ll gladly tell you all about it in great detail.

You increased sales by 50%? Too bad The One Upper had a 60% spike last quarter? And while it’s very cute that you were Employee of the Month, The One-Upper was Salesman of the Year – for two years in a row. Whether these milestones were actually reached or (more likely) The One-Upper is bending the truth a bit, either way it’s obnoxious and can very easily squash morale in a team setting.

3. The Brown-Noser

Some people get ahead by working hard and accomplishing their goals. But The Brown-Noser advances by puckering up to the boss’ backside, or even by engaging in an office romance.

This person does perfectly mediocre work and doesn’t excel in any particular area, yet keeps moving up the ranks solely because they know exactly whose derriere to kiss and work hardest on sucking up to upper management. And nothing is more demoralizing to people actually working hard than others who get promoted based on things other than work ethic and results.

2. The Drama Queen

Don’t let the “Queen” part fool you, as this person can definitely be a man or a woman.

Somehow, even though everyone has the same assignment, the Drama Queen feels put upon or singled out – and has no qualms about telling you their alleged woes. Adding to the problem is you probably know all of the Drama Queen’s other issues – both personal and professional – because nothing is sacred and the Drama Queen wants you to know about all his/her problems. Upcoming wedding? Recent break-up? Blind date over the weekend? Buckle up, because you’re about to hear all about it.

1. The Black Hole

You know who I’m talking about. The coworker who wastes more of your time on a daily basis than Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest combined.

If you catch his/her eye in the hallway or at the water cooler, you cringe because you just know it’ll be a guaranteed 15-20 minutes of chit-chatting and small talk before you can rip yourself away. But while you can do your best to avoid them, sometimes they come to you. Then you’re stuck at your own desk as they try to show you their wedding pictures or the latest viral YouTube cat video while the clock ticks on your project deadline.

So how about it? Did we miss any? Leave your most annoying coworker descriptions in the comments section.

Researching Your Salary Is Never Annoying

Regardless of who you work with and how obnoxious they are, there's one thing more annoying than coworkers -- not getting paid what you're worth. Luckily, can help.

The first thing you should do is research, so you're able to come to the table armed with the knowledge of what your job is worth. Use our free Salary Wizard below to find out what's a fair salary for your position. You can enter your location, education level, years of experience and more to find out an appropriate salary range before you negotiate.

Good luck.