In an ideal world, we’d all get along perfectly with each one of our coworkers. Unfortunately, this is not the case for some of our working relationships. In fact, you likely have one or two coworkers you might find incredibly loud, obnoxious, and frankly annoying. While it may be a struggle to hide your annoyance around this particular individual, maintaining professionalism is critical to your success at your company.
How Can You Make Dealing with Annoying Coworkers Manageable?
Fortunately, there are steps you can take today for dealing with loud coworkers, dealing with obnoxious coworkers, and dealing with distracting coworkers.
Take Noisy Coworkers Aside
One of the first steps for dealing with loud coworkers or distracting coworkers is to address them directly. Some people find heading straight to the source the most effective method for dealing with an issue, however, it’s important to be thoughtful in how you approach your team member in order to maintain a positive working relationship. First, when confronting distracting coworkers, be sure to do so privately.
While you may have spent time commiserating with other coworkers about particular teammates obnoxious habits, you don’t want to embarrass them or make them feel ganged up on. Reserve a private room or meeting space, and engage in an open and honest conversation about the coworker's habits that make it difficult for you to concentrate on your work. When dealing with annoying coworkers, be mindful that they may have no idea their actions are negatively impacting you. In fact, they may genuinely be surprised to hear you voice your concerns.
If you sense tensions rising during your conversation, take a break. It may be time to consider another approach for dealing with obnoxious coworkers.
Talk to your Supervisor
If conversations with distracting coworkers have been unsuccessful, or you simply do not feel comfortable dealing with annoying coworkers yourself, you can enlist the support of your supervisor. Be open with your supervisor about the challenges you’re facing, outlining the specific ways in which your coworker's habits or actions are hindering your work. Your supervisor may ask you if you've taken any steps so far for dealing with obnoxious coworkers, to which you can share any one of one conversation you’ve had.
Your supervisor may then decide to serve as the mediator between you and your coworker to develop a possible solution for how the two of you can work best together. Additionally, your supervisor may feel that the best option is to engage HR. Dealing with annoying coworkers can be draining, so having the support of your supervisor can provide a much-needed reprieve.
Invest in Noise Cancelling Headphones
Sometimes the best way for dealing with loud coworkers or distracting coworkers is to take matters into your own hands by investing in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones. Individuals dealing with loud coworkers often find that headphones work wonders for drowning out distracting conversations, instead of listening to podcasts, instrumental music, or even white noise. While noise-cancelling headphones can be effective for dealing with annoying coworkers, they are not always appropriate to use depending on the work you’re performing. If you find yourself distracted by your music or paying more attention to your podcast than the task at hand, you may need to hold off.
Further, not all workplaces are accepting of headphone use - particularly collaborative workplaces where spontaneous conversation is common. In this case, headphone use can be off-putting and make you appear disengaged. In this case, have a one on one discussion with your supervisor to explain why the headphones are necessary, and if there is a certain time of day during which your headphone use would be most appropriate.
Create “Quiet Zones” in Your Office
Another effective method for dealing with annoying coworkers, particularly dealing with loud coworkers, is by creating designated quiet zones in your office. Whether this quiet zone is a conference room or specific wing of the floor, having set quiet zones can best ensure cross-team cooperation and adherence. If your office currently does not have quiet zones, make a proposal to your supervisor, including a suggestion for where this space could be placed.
Once you’ve received approval, create a plan to introduce the new quiet zones to your team, including the expectations for these areas. It’s likely that any loud or talkative coworkers will avoid quiet zones, giving you an escape from dealing with annoying coworkers while you work in peace.
Set a Good Example
Oftentimes, noisy or obnoxious coworkers are entirely unaware that they’re driving those around them crazy. One of the best solutions for dealing with obnoxious coworkers is to lead by example. If a particularly loud coworker starts up a conversation with you near other teammates that are working, consider the following suggestion: “This conversation might be distracting to others around us. How about we grab an open conference room and continue our discussion there?” Next time around, they may be more inclined to take this step themselves, making it a point to hold conversations in a more private location.
Rent a Private Office Space
Sometimes, despite attempts at addressing issues with a loud coworker or your supervisor, there simply appears to be no solution. In this case, the best method for dealing with loud coworkers or dealing with obnoxious coworkers is to ask for or rent a private office space. Private office spaces offer the most privacy, giving you the option to close the door when things get a bit too noisy and open the door when you’re available for conversation.
Quiet Office Space Rentals from Corporate Suites
If dealing with loud coworkers or dealing with obnoxious coworkers has negatively impacted your productivity and focus, Corporate Suites has office space solutions
to help you get back on track. Our private office spaces and executive suites
have all the amenities you need to work effectively and efficiently, along with the peace and quiet to help you maintain your sanity during the busy workday. Our private office space rentals are flexible and affordable, giving you access when you need it no matter how long you plan on being with us. Contact a Corporate Suites representative
today to discuss the office space solutions available, and say goodbye to dealing with obnoxious coworkers.