1. Careers
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Readers Respond: Co-Workers Behaving Badly

Responses: 108


Evil twins

I have two co-workers who undermind me all the time. I work in a call center environment and sometime they are my relief and I have to give my work to them. I admit I do make mistakes but they make it difficult for me by running to the boss, leaving highlighted marks on the mistake I make on my desk or send me nasty emails about how I'm causing them more phone calls because of the mistakes I left. They keep coming at me trying to make me quit. The problem is these two have everyone else wrapped under their fingers and I'm stuck biting my tongue everyday when someone say's something nice about them. Trust me they are not nice at all.
—Guest Sunshine


A co-worker went to the boss and told him I'd made a mistake at work. Wasnt' major but just one mistake. Customer complained to this person but could have discussed with me. It was an innocent error and I don't admit to being perfect at the job but I thought it quite low of this person to go straight to my boss.
—Guest Ronnie

Why are they still around?

I work with two women who refuse to do their jobs, seem to think they are entitled not to work and think that when they do something that requires them to take a break from playing online games or texting that they should receive a pat on the back. These two grown women are the administrative assistant and receptionist in my department. They seem to think that answering the phones aren't their job and that they have the most difficult job in the department. They do absolutely nothing but complain about being treated unfairly. I have complained to the manager along with several others but she also turns a blind eye and promises changes. I used to love my job and take pride in it but I am so drained by the lack of appreciation, increased work load, little pay and constant negativity that I have begun looking for another job. Meanwhile these two lazy sacks will remain in this job where people will make excuses for their lack of ambition. Did I mention I hate lazy, unmotivated people...?
—Guest FedUp

Real Life Gossip Girl

I work at a motel as a house keeper. The Head Housekeeper steals tip money from our rooms as well as towels and other things. The worst thing she does is gossips about other people. She makes everybody think that everybody is talking about everybody else so everybody hates everybody else. The manager does nothing about it and turns a blind eye.
—Guest Shadoe

Everybody Makes Mistakes

A woman with whom I work makes so many mistakes. Her excuse is "Everybody makes mistakes." She makes no effort to improve or to learn the technical aspects of the job but plays on the internet all day. She tries to slide her work off onto others by transferring calls and leaving her work on the desks of others when they are away from their desks. If a new employee comes on-board, she will offer to show her a few things. After instructions, she will say, "OK. Let me know if you have any questions." She then walks out leaving her work with the new employee, without management's approval. When confronted about it, she acts innocent and will say, "I misunderstood," or will lie and say that the new employee offered to do the work. Now, new employees are warned, but she still manages to dump some work. Management used to give her the benefit of the doubt, because they seemed to be afraid of hurting her feelings. But, now they've gotten better about confronting her. It's still annoying.
—Guest Lila 18

Don't Ask

I work with a girl who always wants to look good in front of the boss.So whenever the boss is around she will ask if you need any help knowing that is the last thing she wants to do. So one day I just arrived to work. I am getting my station set up and here she comes, because the boss is right there, and asks me "Is there anything I can do for you." Normally I would say I have it all under control, but this day I had to say sure. So after I told her what I needed she disappeared and never did it.

Covering up incompetence with bluster

In one of my first jobs in my career, there was this guy who I knew for a fact was hired out of the kindness of the president of the company, even though he never had any relevant work experience and this job would be the high point of his entire career. He often tried to pass work onto me when I first got there, even though it was his responsibility, plain and simple. He was often ill-prepared and when he couldn't handle a task, he would wait a whole day to tell me or the managing director. He often engaged in these angry political rants, as a way to obscure the fact that he was not thorough in his work or that he had no idea how to get the work done. Even with the president of the company making excuses for him and overlooking his incompetence, this guy could have been fired for creating a hostile work environment with all his political statements. He contributed absolutely zero.

Disappointed and Burned Out

I have a coworker who does absolutely nothing all day, yet he is still employed at the company. I have to carry his workload as well as mine. Why do they keep him? I'm so frustrated and disappointed in management that I want to quit even though I love all my coworkers (except for the lazy one).
—Guest Frustrated Person

Can't Believe this just happened

First let me say I work retail. Well anyway a co-worker of mine,who doesn't do anything or know anything, this week called in sick two days in row so me and the other guy got stuck working his shift. The boss is out of town. So this morning the co-worker calls us at the store since he's off today and whines at us, begging us to let him work one of our shifts since he's been off for two days with a mysterious illness and cut into our hours. He said he cant pay his bills this week. He works this job and another one and prefers the other, but won't quit. He is late and sits on the computer all day and pries into customer's business i.e.: randomly asks the other guys fiance's shoe size like it's his business. I understand everyone needs money right now but why call asking to take money from someone else when that person needs it just as bad if not more since it's their only source of income at all. That seems kinda crappy to me.
—Guest tinytim

Thrown Under the Bus

Just got back from vacation and was called into my director's and supervisor's office. They stated, "There was trouble on your last day before leaving on vacation." I was totally surprised because I had left detailed instructions and had cleaned up any loose ends. My supervisor said I had refused to do something that day and had caused trouble with the team. LIE!! It made no sense because the thing she said I refused to do was completed by me before I left on vacation. This is not the first time something like this has happened but it is the most blatant. It is obvious that this supervisor does not like me.
—Guest IQuit!

The Queen of Gaslighting

If my coworker took all the time and energy she uses manipulating everyone else's reality, and used it to learn the basics of her actual job, she could be CEO of the company. But she doesn't, so instead I have to watch her flit around to everyone else's desk and tell a slightly different shading of the truth, confusing and frightening everyone just enough to throw them off the scent of HER OWN complete and utter incompetence at the most basic aspects of her job. She's blatant enough that everyone knows it's happening, but clever enough not to leave a smoking gun. My conflict-avoidant manager completely refuses to do anything about it because he doesn't want to hurt her feelings, and anyone who brings it up is just having "personality differences." Does he realize how laughably hollow it sounds when he turns around and scolds the group about quality at meetings?
—Guest BarelySane

Stinky boy does no work!

Male coworker A has been at the company for 6 years, I've been here 5. He's lied about his experience and degree (he didn't actually finish), and the dept. head brought him here because he was going to her church. I came here through an ad from a temp firm. There are three other women in this accounting dept. "A" regularly forgets to shower, shampoo, wear deodorant, and/or wash his clothes, and these gals' response is "Oh, he just needs someone to mother him. He's single & you know how boys get." He gets away with doing nothing at work, and now he's starting to blame me for things. When I confront him, he laughs, snickers, mumbles a response, or simply turns away. I've gone to the lone HR guy, who is apparently only here to protect the executives, and he's placated me ("well, I'll see if I can get to the bottom of this") then nothing happens and nothing changes in 5 years. The entertainment industry is all about who you're sleeping with, I guess.

controlling co-worker

I approached a co-worker very respectfully and gently about her dumping an inordinant amount of work on me. Something I can honestly say I would never do to her. I thought we could have a calm, mature discussion about it. Her initial response was outrage. Then she absolutely refused to talk, put her hand up at me and said "don't even" every time I tried to say something. She then broke down in tears, had someone come and fill in for her while she and another co-worker went outside the front door (where others could see her) and broke down in tears. No one saw her initial disrespect to me, just the tears. Now I'm the bad guy and she's "poor Mary". So frustrating! I work very hard and try to make others' jobs easier wherever I can. She gives others work that she could do herself. I still have to interact with her on a regular basis. How should I treat her? She is very arrogant!


Have a co-worker who is annoying to the endth degree with her compulsive cracking of sunflower seeds every day. She even does it while talking on the telephone. Disgusting, because she is constantly hand to mouth--wouldn't want to touch her computer!!! She obviously has no couth.
—Guest Sue

I hate bullies

I have a co-worker on another team, most of us call her the drama queen. Last week when my supv was off she would ask my co-workers where I was. Then today my supv confronted me and asked if I spent a hour in another co-workers office just talking. We do home visits where I work and I was leaving to do a scheduled HV and stepped into my co-workers office to ask her to listen for calls until other team members showed up. As I was leaving the office I almost ran into the drama queen standing outside of the door. My supv stated that he believes me but advised me and others on the team not to get caught speaking to each other so that it does not look like we conversing instead of working. This is also the same drama queen that was recently in trouble for mooning 2 other employees. It seems the supv wants to believe her.
—Guest piner10

Share Your Story

Co-Workers Behaving Badly

Receive a one-time notification when your response is published.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.