Wherever you go in life, you will meet different people with different personalities. These different personalities can be difficult to deal with yet rewarding especially in a working environment. Coping with a colleague’s bad habits can vastly improve your working environment & make the workplace a better environment for all employees. Also, the problem with habits is that they are, by definition, habitual. However, in the first instance, you are probably better off ignoring the distraction and giving your co-worker the benefit of the doubt.

Here are a few tips that can help you deal with a difficult colleague:


  1. Identification:

Identify what is the problem. Sometimes its just mind over matters

so by identifying the problem (should there be one), you can easily address it.

Ask yourself questions such as:

  • “Is this a problem?”
  • “Does this problem affect me, if so, how?”
  • “Can I cope with this problem?”
  • “Will it benefit me if I confront it?”


  1. Confrontation:

Once you’ve established what the problem is as well as the negative effects it has on you or other co-workers, you can now address the problem by confronting the difficult colleague.

Bear in mind, “ it’s not what you say, its how you say it”. Bullying a difficult co-worker is not the way to go about doing this but rather display humility might get your colleague to understand the situation better.


    1. Dealing:

It is sometimes easy to confront a person, however most times, we don’t know how they will react or if they will react at all. A possibility is that the difficult colleague may not take heed to your confrontation but instead feel offended making everything 10 times worst. You need to know what to do after this.


  1. Plan B:

In every business, there should be disaster management. This, in other words, could be the HR department. But remember, you might just get yourself tied up should your confrontation not go so well. Take the matter to the HR department & allow the allocated people to take care of it.