Less Obvious Ways to Identify Lazy Office Workers

We all have that one person at work, and if we’re really unlucky a couple of people at work, who just don’t seem to have the same work ethic as the rest of us. These people are the “do as little as possible to get by” crowd, and they will take full advantage of whatever they can to get as much as they can.

lazy coworkers

When it comes to these problem people, they are not always as obvious to spot as you might think. It’s not always the person who lounges at their desk instead of getting up and walking around on break.

To pick out those do-nothings in the workplace, look for these five not-so-obvious signs you are pulling more than your own weight:

1. The system user

The system user version of a lazy co-worker is the person who shows up to work every day with a woe-i-me story and how they miraculously got out of it. These are the people who come and do their jobs, sometimes even satisfactorily, but everyone around them is forced to listen to the latest drama going on in their lives. These are the people who sue over minor inconveniences, are on government programs if they think they can benefit, and always have a sorry excuse as to why they can’t stay late or work extra hours. These are also the people who generally act like they are the most entitled to everything—even though they tend to work the least.

2. The pot-stirrer

This lazy employee is the one who likes to mix up drama—especially with new employees who might threaten the little bubble of comfort the pot-stirrer has created. This person is often a very senior employee who feels they have put in enough time with the company that slacking off is an acceptable option. They will usually make up strange stories and false laws about the work place and even threaten junior staffs by being a false “authority personnel” . This person is particularly damaging to morale because they are always negative because they feel it is important everyone around them knows just how “special” they are. These are the employees who are often responsible for fast turnover in a business.

3. The busy-but-not-busy-body

Not everyone who is running around the office is really doing a good job. The busy-but-not-busy-body is the person who has a million pointless things to do just so they can avoid the 2 or 3 main aspects of their job. This could be the secretary who spends too much time stuck to his PC watching movies or surfing on Facebook, while pretending to be working so hard all day long, or the employee who feels it’s important to alphabetize files on his desktop instead of getting a project done. Bitterly we also have those who in the name of “teaching the newcomers about work”, are actually being the obvious lazy workers and assigning all their duties to the “apparent” learner, and this time in the name of “classwork”.

4. The negative Nelly

The negative Nelly is one of the most obvious of the not-so-obvious lazy co-workers. These people are the ones who never have anything good to say about anything; if you ask them, the glass is always half empty and the clouds are always full of rain. These people are negative to the core, and that negativity makes them have a “what’s the point” attitude. Working with a person like this can be very frustrating because they would rather watch and complain than close their mouths and do it the right way.

5. The Dysfunction Source

When dysfunction exists in a company’s culture and employees feel powerless to change that dysfunction, they leave to find employment elsewhere. Laziness that goes unnoticed by management is a form of dysfunction, because it signals a lack of respect to productive employees and a disconnect between management and workers. This is an unfortunate scenario which happens in many traditional work settings and the only solution to solve this problem is to locate the Source(s) of this Dysfunction.

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