Top 10 Signs You Drive People Crazy and What To Do About It

>> Friday, November 27, 2009

You either fall into the "popular camp" at work; the small group camp or no camp. If you are reading this, you know who you are. Maybe you even
know someone you can forward this to.

Don't panic, there are things can be done. It's like marketing or damage control. Remember, if Hugh Grant and Richard Nixon can do it, so can you.

1. People seem to have a quick excuse to leave your company
Problem: Everyone seems to be really busy around you, even during the off-season.
What you can do: Stick to short, relevant conversations with peers. If you must go off topic, inquire in a friendly way about your colleague's families.

2. Your phone calls always go to voice mail
Problem: It's amazing because it happens even when you KNOW they are there.
What to do: Keep the vmails short and email when possible.

3. No one stops by or even walks by your office, cubicle, etc.
Problem: People take the long way around instead of walking by you.
What to do: Don't tackle anyone who does come along. Just smile at them, and don't start any conversations. If they talk to you, be friendly and don't complain about anything.

4. You frequently eat lunch alone.
Problem: Though you tell yourself it's by your choice, you know it's really everyone else's choice.
What to do: Start eating in the cafeteria, and don't bring any reading material. Be open to conversations, but don't dominate them.

5. If you are talking to someone, suddenly another person always seems to come by needing that person.
Problem: It's the classic "save" technique and this means people have a plan in place in case they get stuck talking to you.
What to do: People are doing this because you are annoying to talk to. Try to improve your social skills. Listen empathetically and let them ask you about yourself.

6. You are never consulted for office parties or gatherings.
Problem: Things just seemed to get decided when you are not around.
What to do: Offer to help take down decorations. No one wants to do this, but it will show you are a team player.

7. You don't have a best friend at work.
Problem: In fact, when you really think about it, you have no friends at work.
What to do: This will take a lot of hard work. Your best bet may be to help mentor a new hire. Talk to your boss about helping new employees learn the ropes. Try to bring in treats for everyone regularly. Bake or buy. Even a veggie tray during the holidays is really appreciated.

8. No one inquires about your holiday plans.
Problem: The sad truth is, people just don't want to know if you will be alone, as they don't want to have to invite you.
What to do: Politely ask about your coworkers plans. They will most likely feel obligated to ask you about your plans. Keep your answers positive and short.

9. No one shares family photos with you.
Problem: When your coworker returns after maternity leave, she doesn't approach you to show pictures of the new baby.
What to do: Ask her in a friendly way when you first see her. Gush and say really nice things about the baby. Don't give advice or talk about your cousin's kids. Offer her your help with any catching up she needs to do.

10. Your boss has stopped teaming you up with others.
Problem: Most of your job duties are solitary and your committee work is minimal.
What to do: Talk to your boss about helping out more and volunteer whenever possible. Try to do considerate things like go on lunch or coffee runs whenever possible. Buy birthday cards for everyone in the office.

These are good steps to take. They will prove you can collaborate, you can be a good friend and you can play nice with others.

(Photo credits: jlastras, archie4oz,


Darcy December 9, 2009 at 10:00 PM  

oh my gosh this is such a great post! i wish i could send this to every socially-inept person i know--they just need these tools and they could be more liked!!!!!

Maggie Madison December 11, 2009 at 8:12 PM  

@ Darcy; it's always nice to leave an anonymous blog post in someone's box...LOL Or just recommend they check out this great blog: yournontoxiclife!! Maybe they'll get the hint.