If someone displays these 12 behaviors, they won’t be taken seriously at work

Nobody has a perfect job, but some are better than others. 

It’s not just the job itself, of course, it’s the people you work with and your relationship with them. 

Some of us are blessed to have more likable and communicative work colleagues than others, but it’s not entirely out of our control. 

In fact there are behaviors that people do which make them into a running joke at work and lead to respect rapidly eroding among their coworkers and superiors. 

This is a look at the key things to avoid if you want to be taken seriously (and paid seriously) at work. 

Let’s dive in. 

1) Talking about coworkers behind their backs

The first bad habit is talking about coworkers behind their backs

People who do this quickly become the bane of an office or work site. This includes online and remote jobs, where this kind of behavior can still spread. 

Folks don’t like to find out that a coworker has been talking about them behind their back, to say the least. 

The only exception would be things like planning surprise parties or Secret Santa gifts, since it’s understandable in such scenarios! 

2) Engaging in gossip and spreading rumors 

On a closely related note to the previous point is spreading rumors and gossiping

This is pretty common at work, but those who do it generally end up distrusted and disliked. 

Even if gossip can provide temporary fun and laughs, at the end of the day it leads to a toxic work environment. 

The main reason is that even those who find the gossip amusing know that eventually it will circle around to them. 

It also leads to a loss of respect from managers and supervisors, who dislike its time-wasting aspect as well as the possibility it will start or worsen inter-work conflicts. 

3) Speaking disrespectfully to colleagues and talking over people

The kind of person who wants to be taken seriously at work does have to assert themselves. 

However this does not equate to bullying or aggressive behavior. 

In fact, work bullies are avoided at all costs by everyone else, because their style of talking over people and speaking disrespectfully is toxic and stressful. 

Nobody wants to be around somebody who treats them that way, and if they have to be and that person is a boss or superior, workers will smile and nod but start making plans to find other work.

4) Bringing private work conflicts up in front of everybody 

We all have arguments and drama that come up, sometimes in the course of a work meeting or work day. 

But the kind of person who loses respect at the work can’t separate the personal from the professional.

They’ll shout into their phone during lunch break to their partner they’re fighting with…

They’ll slam their desk after getting bad news about an increase in car insurance payments…

Coworkers may sympathize, but ultimately they start avoiding this workmate because they just don’t want to be around this level of instability and erratic behavior.

Speaking of letting personal issues spill over into work…

5) Spending a lot of time texting and on personal communications at work

Those who spend a lot of time texting and chatting with friends or other contacts while at work eventually get a reputation as unreliable. 

This is generally seen as disrespectful to the job.

It also makes somebody appear to have no attention span and basically be at work purely to collect a paycheck. 

There’s no law against that, of course, but coworkers and bosses are fair to ask that if somebody wants a paycheck they at least make an effort to do the job they’ve been hired for without interrupting it every five minutes when the Facebook messenger sound dings.

6) Showing up late to work or highly frazzled 

Showing up late to work or very out of it can affect everybody else at the job site, in the office or online. 

Those who have a lot of trouble with getting to work on time or often feel low energy and sloppy usually lose people’s respect. 

At the very least, such employees won’t be promoted or given more responsibility and leadership positions. 

It’s often nothing person:

They simply don’t appear able to handle the demands of the job, and as a result coworkers and superiors don’t see them as upwardly mobile. 

7) Unhygienic workplace behavior 

For everyone who works at a physical location, hygiene is deeply important. 

Those who blow their nose in front of everyone, chew tobacco and spit it on the yard area outside work or often clear phlegm loudly for all to hear often get a reputation as dirty. 

Other examples include folks showing up with very smelly body odor, crazy bed hair or ripped and soiled clothing. 

We can’t all look like a million bucks all the time, but basic standards at work (even on Zoom call) aren’t too much to ask.

Fair or unfair, employees who act or look like this get a reputation as not committed to the job and tend to be avoided and looked down on by coworkers and management. 

8) Borrowing work items without permission

Those who want to borrow something should just ask. 

But that’s not how it works in many jobs, all the way from borrowing phones to borrowing workplace equipment, clothes or anything else. 

Coworkers who borrow stuff without asking, use your computer without asking or otherwise disrespect personal property, quickly get a reputation as “avoid at all costs.”

Nobody wants their stuff going missing around somebody and the lack of boundaries this shows also doesn’t sit right with anyone on a job site. 

9) Being hyper-competitive and trying to undercut coworkers 

Competition is a healthy and normal part of every work environment. 

But when it gets too extreme, it becomes toxic

Work colleagues who begin pouncing on any task or potential promotion like a drowning person grasping for a life raft become rapidly intolerable. 

Working hard is one thing, but treating work like a fight to the death to get ahead is something else entirely. 

10) Hogging the spotlight and taking credit for coworkers’ accomplishments

Part of being overly competitive for many folks is an obsession with taking over the spotlight. 

If you’ve worked with people like this then you know exactly what I mean. 

They’ll claw their way to the top at all costs, stabbing colleagues in the back just to take credit for something they didn’t do or steal an idea. 

They’ll cozy up to the boss in the most obvious way if it leads to a raise or a kind word and spotlighting themselves in the eyes of management. 

These kinds of people are very unpopular because of their obsequious behavior and untrustworthy motivations

11) Being overly lax and uncommitted to work projects

On the opposite side of being too competitive and spotlight-hungry, are the kind of employees who don’t really care. 

This kind of lax, procrastinating persona is parodied in shows like the Office, but is very much a real type of worker. 

Those who show up to work with no real commitment quickly lose the respect of others. 

They also tend to bring down the overall mood around everyone they’re working with. 

That relates to the next point… 

12) Taking out a bad mood on colleagues 

Employees who vent on their colleagues (and bosses who do so) are widely unpopular. 

Nobody respects them for two reasons:

  • They show a childish lack of self-control and lack of respect for others around them.
  • They get in the way of work and bring down the mood of everyone else by venting and taking out their problems on other people. 

We’ve all worked with people like this, and we all lost respect for them quickly. 

People like a coworker who lifts everyone up, not a coworker who pushes everyone down.

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