How to deal with an annoying colleague

Just what is it about you? Whether you're waiting at the bar, sat on the train or in this case just trying to complete that last minute proposal, you always seem to attract the eccentric, obnoxious and clinically insane. Annoying colleagues can be a real test of resolve, especially when it seems that they're only job is to disrupt you in your job.

Getting too engaged with the idiosyncrasies of the office joker, loud talker and Mr 'has no respect for personal space,' could start to impact on your productivity and enthusiasm for job. Learning how to deal with an annoying colleague therefore, could not only keep your career on the right path but might even save a few lives in the process.

It's just professional

You might have become accustomed to sticking pins in the voodoo dolls of the Jedward tribute act either side of your cubicle, but remember, it's only a job. You've not got to take any of them home at the end of the night and you're not expected to exchange friendship bracelets on your yearly 'friendiversary'. Any association with an annoying colleague is only really temporary and before you know it one of you will be promoted, fired or on to your next venture. So stay rational, keep things in perspective and detach yourself from even the most irritating of situations.

Limit contact to a minimum

You'd be surprised how much you can avoid a person if you really put your mind to it. Affording your time to those that waste it the most is a fast track way to tedium, empty smiles and perpetual eye rolling. Limiting your interactions with someone can actually improve your rapport leaving you to build a somewhat cohesive professional relationship whilst minimising the prospects of a personal one. If this means that you request to move elsewhere in the office, then so be it, but if you're spotted hiding behind fixtures or starting to wear novelty moustaches, then perhaps you might be the problem.

Tell them (but try and be nice)

Sometimes the best way to deal with a problem is to tackle it head on. This has to be approached with some caution, but sometimes making your colleagues aware of how their behaviour is affecting you, might just ease the situation. Not everyone is so receptive to hearing how much of a giant pain in the gluteus maximus they are, so try and present this in a nice, constructive package. Casually mention in conversation that you work best in a quiet environment or that your leprosy is contagious and you'll be amazed at how quickly they modify their behaviour.

Maybe you're the problem?

If you find all of your colleagues irritating and you can't help but hear the score of Pyscho with every coworker utterance, then just maybe, you're the problem. We all have our own annoying habits and characteristics and unbeknownst to you, you could be the office grouch. So give people a little slack and acknowledge that you might annoy them as much as they annoy you.

Throughout your career, you're resolve is likely to be tested by a revolving door of annoying bosses, colleagues and clients but it's important to remember that they're all just part of the chocolate box of life. So breath, smile and try to at least make it to 5 o'clock without causing a scene.