Whether you work in an enormous corporate facility or an independent start-up with three workers, you may be familiar with a certain few personality types around the water cooler. It hardly matters whether you are crammed within a claustrophobic cubicle or seated behind a rich mahogany desk, every day you go to work expecting to interact with some unique people.
Given a sizable organization, encountering these denizens of the office environment is inevitable. The following are the, by worker cliche, top ten office personalities.
1. The Omnipotent I.T. Guy
He is the only person who knows how to fix the network when it is down, so he is practically worshipped by the rest of staff. Despite questionable hygiene habits and workplace attitude, he has invaluable status on staff and is completely indispensable. One can only hope he never realizes this before he truly begins to tyrannically take advantage of his true potential power.
2. The Overzealous Team Player
Every entity in existences wants its members to believe that it is the best in the world and is genuinely serving an important mission. Even vast “big box” corporations come up with mission statements that make their business sound eligible for sainthood. While the vast majority of cubicle-dwellers never buy into the idea that the company they work for is for the greater good of the world, a select few do, and are abundantly loud about it. Sincerely operating under the belief that they are in the prime position to alter the state of society and affect our culture as a whole, they are far too eager to instigate initiatives that feel more like school spirit than enhanced bottom lines. But since such intangibly soft skills are so adamantly admired by upper management, their unadulterated, if not ill-founded, enthusiasm becomes an unfortunate consequence that everyone around them must simply continue to deal with.
3. The Mysterious Executive
Supposedly, he or she is a brilliant visionary with ideas ahead of their time and concepts that will instantly reverse the company’s fortunes. Yet, as the workweek progresses, this revolutionary is nowhere to be found. Seeming to always be off-site, the blur between business and pleasure is sometimes rather hazy: After all, what business could possibly be had in Bali that does not involve the beach? Their assistant, though, will continue to insist that they are terribly busy and will not return to their desk until after their annual meditative sabbatical in the Himalayas.
4. The Meeting Instigator
This person is never available, always in a meeting. Want to schedule one with them? Their secretary would be happy to oblige, except that this busybody is unavailable until July of next year, and even that appointment is questionable. The remarkable part is that, although their schedule seems to be completely packed, they have plenty of time to e-mail you six more meeting invites for odd hours of the next week.
5. The Perpetual Maternity Mom
Is she always pregnant? It sure seems so, as she waddles around the office, huffing and puffing, sporting a gigantic baby belly that appears about to burst. But didn’t she just return from a lengthy maternity leave? Her womb must be some sort of biochemical anomaly, because she pops babies out like the snack machine in the lobby. She must have 37 children by now, and each no less than four months apart.
6. The Flirt
The less said about this one, the better. If you doubt this, ask Ted what happened at last year’s holiday party.
7. The Snack Attacker
This individual is always eating, to the extent that all consider it disgusting. They lean over their cubicle and, while chewing their way through a thick ham salad sandwich, sloppily request a half-ream of copy paper. You have no choice but to cringingly oblige, as he or she then rather audaciously offers you a bag of pretzels. This, you do not oblige. The Snacker also possesses the uncanny ability to scarf down the most meeting food yet be nowhere to be found when it is time to clean up.
8. The Job-Hater
Laced with profanity and malice, their diatribe against XYZ Widget Company is ongoing and vicious. Their countenance is never pleasant, and examples of this personality seem to do nothing but complain and complain and complain about their job. Although, if you dare ask why they do not quit, they will only scowl and launch into an even more bitter discourse on the necessity of keeping one’s job in the present economy, their health benefits, and the fortunes of the Dallas Cowboys in recent years. What relevance this has to the discussion at hand, you are unsure of, but wisely decide not to query any further.
9. The Delegator
Content to never actually do any work of their own, The Delegator instead decides to pass the buck onto anyone around. Their walk around the offices is like a drive-by shooting waiting to happen, as they fling a folder onto your desk and promptly demand “Report by 4, okay? Great, thanks!” Tasks and objectives bounce off their thick skin like basketballs on hardwood, and for some reason, your boss thinks they have excellent time management skills. Yeah, you would to if your to-do list shrunk in direct correlation with your amount of available co-workers.
That’s right, you! The guy or gal sitting there reading lists about other personality types, thinking it is awfully funny how reminiscent they are of people you know and work with every day. Be careful how hard you laugh, because as you sit there, you may unwittingly already be a source of amusement for others, as you fill the role of Overly Chatty Receptionist, Annoying Laugh Guy, or even the dreaded Drinks All The Coffee And Hogs Space In The Office Fridge. Consider: In the grand scheme of office satire, who are you?