By Kristal Roberts
You try to ignore the snarky comments, and you do your best to take the high road— until that final quip leads you to knock your co-worker’s lights out.
Now let’s backtrack: you probably haven’t touched a hair on that rabble-rouser’s head (yet), but if the mere thought of smacking your co-worker one good time brings you the slightest twinge of joy, it may be time to address the situation. Clearly, this work flea has buried itself under your skin. Maybe the twit you work with is oblivious to the problem. Or maybe, your misery just makes their day. Work fleas are like the Newman to your Seinfeld.
They may take quick glances at your computer screens to see what you’re doing. They make it their duty to find what’s wrong with your work, and then take credit where it isn’t due.They may try to pump you for your opinions, only to use them against you later.
Work fleas watch the clock to see if your lunch hour was an actual 60 minutes.You can smell suspicious activities and manipulation all over them, even if you can’t quite put your finger on it.
You could be dealing with a former schoolyard bully turned office troublemaker.You could have a talentless suck up on your hands who deflects from his or her shortcomings by berating and humiliating others.
Perhaps the worst scenario is a world-class psychopath that’s intelligent and charming, but gets off on control, manipulating people’s minds and watching their targets cringe.Even if you try to ignore these types, they may be so good that you find yourself getting sucked into the vortex of their will.Perhaps you were stuck with more work or got roped into doing a favor only to be frustrated with yourself when you realize you “fell for the okey-dokey”.
Either way, you don’t have to take it. Doing nothing will just send the message that you’re either okay with this behavior or that you’re weak and easy target.Take comfort in knowing that they’re ways to put your co-worker in check without you having to end up in jail for aggravated assault.