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10 Coworkers that You should Avoid at all costs

Updated on November 5, 2013

The tattle tale

Employee is certainly not one to take into your confidence. I know from experience when I was in the workforce. I learned the hard way that confiding in the wrong person cost me a raise and then a good promotion. Guess whom it went to? The tattle tale. It's not enough that the tattle tale employee cannot keep their nose out of everyone's business, but when they use it against you for personal gain, well all I can tell you is please avoid coworkers who start conversations with these two words: "trust me."


The mountain climber

Is not as much dangerous as he or she is annoying. They are always looking for people to use in order to make it to the top. They have no real conscience, just a beaming wide smile that cannot be trusted. Avoid mountain climbers as much as possible. Unless you have this thing where you like to be looked down on and used for errands. I am telling you that today's office workers are stressed enough without having guys and gals like this guy who has so much self-ambition they cannot see three feet in front of them.


Love me some sexual harassment

Yes, my friends, sexual harassment is very evident in the workplace in 2013. It may not be implemented as open as it used to be, but you can bet it's still around. Do not be the victim of this menace that costs companies millions in lawsuits and causes insurance rates to skyrocket. And above all, stay away from a man or woman who seems just too friendly and touchy, feely for their own good. I state this fact because of my research that says nine out of ten employees who are way too friendly to the opposite sex for no reason is up to something. Take this as your early warning system. Your wake-up call. Turn the jerk or jerkette into the boss and his human resource managers. You just do the right thing and you will be okay.


Office thief

Yes, almost every office has one. These guys and girls are clean-cut mostly and able to fool even an experienced F.B.I. profiler. They are office thieves. They steal supplies--pens, pencils, notebooks, staples, anything that they can use at home, but do not consider small things as thievery. But what is more alarming is that some office thieves venture into the dangerous world of stealing other employees' personal items such as watches, wallets, credit card information and such. Friends, these people also cost your place of business in the billions each year. Did you hear me say AVOID these low lifes?


The office liar

can connive with the best of them. You are sitting at your desk or in your cubicle working the day away when suddenly you are called "on the carpet" to the boss' office. You are then accused of taking extra minutes for break and lunch time. You are in shock. You have worked for this company for over 38 years and sure, you have taken a minute here and there, but you made it up with overtime with no pay. Who's to blame? The Office Liar who fished this fact out of your once best friend and told your boss "out of concern." The Office Liar is just like The Mountain Climber except more slippery. Now you have been warned.


Lone wolf employee

Is just that. A lone wolf. Distant, cold-natured, and not a friendly coworker. He or she is this way because they must be hiding something such as a bad temper that can become volatile when pushed too far. Stay your distance from a coworker who never eats lunch with the rest of the coworkers. Or never attends an office party. Grant them their wish of just wanting to be left alone and leave them alone. I have known employees like this and I like to have new friends, but not with people like the Lone Wolf Employee.


Flirty girls mean danger

to the single or married man in the workplace. If he allows it. Most guys love attention from the opposite sex. A smile, wink, or a brush of the shoulder by a silken hand. Men love it. They eat this up like hungry Dalmatians. But buddy. Flirty girls can get you into all sorts of trouble. What if one day you are asked to go on a business trip with a flirty girl from your office? Well here is what could happen. This girl can say that you made advances toward her and pal, your boss will take her word every time. And you will be out of a job, sued by this pretty vixen and then kicked out on the street by your wife of 16 years. is it worth it, male (or female) employees?


The childish employee

is tough to deal with on any given day. Don't ask me to define why he or she is very childish even at their age of 34. I guess it is because of their lack of attention when growing up. Or they were given their way as a child and learned that when they want things to happen for them, all they have to do is act childish. It works believe it or not. So do not get too close to a childish employee who maybe is the big boss' petted niece who is also a "gold digger." Be firm and be strong and she will learn you do not play her games.


The brown noser

is as powerful as our buddy, the "Mountain Climber." He or she knows that by sucking-up to the boss, they will ultimately get on the boss' good side no matter what they have to do. The brown nosing employee puts the boss first. At all times. He or she acts like the character "Dwight K. Shrewt," played by Rainn Wison on the Office. You have to watch who you talk to and what you are talking about. The brown noser is always on the prowl seeking new dirt to tell the boss about at any given hour of the day. When a brown noser comes around asking you fake friendly questions, reply in stupid, hard-to-figure-out phrases. Soon, no more brown noser.


The braggart employee

flourishes on praise from others. The braggart employee sees only themselves, only talks about themselves and that is all whom lives in their world: Themselves. Some braggart employees are so self-absorbed, they develop a shopping addiction for fine clothing, shoes and jewelry and will barge right up to you and ask, "aren't these earrings to die for?" In this case it is a woman braggart employee, but a male braggart employee might do the same thing. Go on and be friendly with them, but do NOT worship them or you are stuck with them on every break and lunch hour--gabbing about who else? Themselves. Watch for them and take appropriate measures.

Why did I write this story?

Very simple. My latest hub, "10 Bosses You Need to Stay Away From," was an attempt to help you get into the right job and this one is to help you when you are inside the workplace.

Yes, I tried to think of everything? Didn't I?

Didn't I go a great job? Huh?


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    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Hi, Willow,

      I respect your opinion on Lone Wolf. You do have a legitimate point. Eating lunch should also be a time to rest your mind and not talk that much.

      I had the reverse problem. When I ate with my coworkers, which was rare, no one ever talked to me, asked me anything or you know, the normal talk that coworkers say.

      Na, da. Zilch.

      To this day I still wonder why.

      But I did make an effort to tell them what a good job they were doing or even emptying their trash cans as a favor.

      Sometimes, no one is liked by anyone.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama


      You are correct. To have your mom complaining about the people you already know.

      That is a true case of literally "bringing your job and your mom's job home with you."

      Thanks for coming by. You are always welcome.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Justin's Mom,

      I hope I didn't put the Lone Wolf employee into a bad light--in fact, I tried to be this character and just do my job and go home, but I had a boss that would not allow me to be quiet and just work.

      He was always planning projects outside the workplace and most of them benefitted him, not me. Note: he would volunteer me for certain civic events without asking me.

      I wish I had used that one too.

      I see your point about Lone Wolf giving you the space so you could work and survive.

      Thanks for the comment.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Hello, teaches12345,

      You are right about reactions to these special workers. That reminded me of a guy who would tell border-line vulgar jokes and laugh more at the joke than I did.

      So one day he came up to my work station and told one and I just looked, not glared, at him.

      He finally got the hint and stopped coming around.

      Thanks for the reminder and comment.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Dear lupine,

      I enjoyed your remarks. Plus, you pointed out some very poignant pieces of advice for people at the office.

      I do not see how you endured that place where you had that jerk standing around harassing women. Didn't the females threaten to sue him for sexual harassment?

      It is people like that who bring down the morale.

      Thanks, DEAR lupine, for the comment, friendship and following.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Dearest Catgypsy,

      How sweet. Thank you for the comment, and compliment. I do my best on each hub that I write. Now on some of the earlier ones, I need to go back and tweeek some and delete the others.

      I hope you are having a good day.

      Kiss and hug your little ones.

      Love you, Kenneth

      and Festus sends his love too.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama


      Thanks for your input. And I appreciate how you got your point across to the younger people about to enter the workplace.

      The workplace in some ways is worse now than when I was able to work. But not giving too much of your personal information to anyone was always a good tip. Wish I had used it.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      I strongly disagree with your "lone wolf employee." Not everyone wants to eat lunch with their coworkers or is able to all the time. I ate lunch with my coworkers from my last job a couple of days a week. All it was a complaint and whine fest about the boss and the job, and you could pretty much memorize the script about it because my two coworkers would say the same thing. Everyone else on the team ate separately at different times. The only reason I ate lunch with them was to maintain a work relationship, and all it did was make me miserable. Believe you me, I am not going to do that again. It isn't worth it.

    • zsobig profile image


      4 years ago from United Kingdom

      This is a wonderful and very eye-opening article.

      In my life I had to encounter most of these people already, and I often hear my poor Mom quarreling about her co-workers, most of whom also fall into at least one of these categories... but the best is, of course, if the same colleague falls into several different categories... that is the ultimate feeling when you have to face people like that :).

    • profile image

      Justins Mom 

      4 years ago

      I may take a second look at the lone wolf, they may be shy, have 2 jobs and want a small people break. Not everyone is a super social person. If you invite them and they still do not come, I agree to give space and accept they are different, do not be rude or mean or badmouth, we are all part of the same team -

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      4 years ago

      I have worked with some of these over the past years. Knowing how to handle the interaction and conflicts will prove very useful in social settings. Wonderful approach to this topic!

    • lupine profile image


      4 years ago from Southern California (USA)


      How observant of you. Only you can interpret things in a funny, yet realistic way. Thanks for the warning signs. I worked at a place with a rude guy, he would stand there and watch me, or someone else do their work...making inappropriate comments or complaining about how the work was being done... even if not his area of work. I would often make comments, such as, don't you have something to do? He would say ridiculous things, such as telling a lady that worked there, that she was getting bald. I felt bad for her. One time he said something to me and went too far...I didn't speak to him for 5 years, then one day, slowly, he began talking to me. He was much nicer after that- stopped being rude to me, still did it to others. But I knew to keep my distance. Great hub subject, Kenneth.

    • catgypsy profile image


      4 years ago from the South

      I think it is very hard sometimes to get too close to anyone you work with because it seems almost everyone falls into one of these categories! It's also hard to see some of these traits until you've gotten to know them fairly well. Great guide though! Yes, you did a great job!

    • informationshelte profile image


      4 years ago

      Hi Kenneth,

      This is a really eye-opening article on the various characters and behaviors to be avoided in the workplace.

      It can be a particularly useful compass for young and/or inexperienced workers who find it hard to understand specific acts by their seemingly friendly coworkers.

      When they finally realize that these coworkers were undermining their position in the company all that time, it's too late. The naïve victims have already been shown the exit door.


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