We all have our pet-peeves. We don't understand how John from accounting can chew so loudly or how Jill can constantly tap her pen without becoming as annoyed with herself as you are. We're all too aware of what bugs us about our co-workers. But what about you irks those around you?

Nobody is perfect. Even your best friend in the office might get annoyed with you now and again. But for the most part, you want to do your best to keep things kosher between you and your co-workers. And that means knowing what types of actions and behaviors tend to tick people off.

You may not realize it, but if you do any of these things, your co-workers will probably end up severely disliking you:

Wasting time during meetings

Most days people have incredibly full schedules. And while meetings are necessary to keep team members on the same page about what's going on, they can get annoying when they're drawn out by someone's off-topic ramblings.

Endless questions and comments that keep veering the meeting away from the agenda waste everyone's time. Even if something seems urgent to you, think twice about whether or not the current meeting is the right time to bring it up.

Not getting involved socially

Some people like to keep their work and personal lives separate. They clock-in, do their job, and never get to know those they work with. However, you might actually be hurting your career if you're not taking the time to interact with your co-workers.

A 2015 Virgin Pulse survey found that 66 percent of employees feel their relationships in the office help them be more productive and focused. Be friendly and strengthen your connections with co-workers, and you might be surprised how much of a better employee it makes you.

Passing your responsibility onto other people

Everyone gets overloaded with work now and again, and if you're lucky, your co-workers will help you out when you need it. But if you abuse their support and always ask for favors to get things done on time, it won't be long before you're known as the one in the office who doesn't pull his own wait. Be sure to pay back other's support by helping them out just as much as they help you.

Being a perfectionist

Sometimes things just need to move along and get done. Yes, improvements are always possible, but if people have to keep working on the same projects over and over because you're not as satisfied as the rest of the team, you'll wear their patience thin. Be realistic about your expectations and know when to walk away once they've been met.

Crossing professional boundaries

Many companies are becoming more casual places to work. However, there is still a professional code in tact you're expected to follow. Manners and decorum still matter. Avoid gossiping, oversharing, or making inappropriate jokes. That will not only maintain your professional reputation, but keep you in the good graces of your co-workers.

Ordering others around

Leadership skills are important to have, but they don't give you the right to overstep the boundaries of your position. When working with others and delegating tasks, make sure there is a two-way conversation. Ask others for input on how they think things should be done and how they'd like to contribute. Even if you're in a leadership role, this approach will earn you more points than barking out orders all day.

Being a Debby Downer

We all have our bad days -- those days when there seems to be a rain cloud following you around and nothing seems to pan out. But if you're the person who is constantly bringing everyone down with your negativity, co-workers will avoid you like the plague.

Even if you're not a cheery person by nature, pay attention to your word choices and the tone of your voice. It can also help to balance out your more critical observations with compliments or at least suggestions on how to make improvements.

Being part of a team can be difficult. People get on each other's nerves and tensions can run high. But if you're aware of how your behaviors are perceived by others, there's less of a chance of annoying your co-workers and impeding the work you do.


What do you think is the worst habit a co-worker can have? Share in the comments below!

Published on: Jul 26, 2016
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.