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Questions tagged [work-environment]

Use this tag if the question is related to the work environment, such as an issue with your boss, your coworkers, or someone you have authority over.

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181 votes
10 answers
43k views

How to ask a vegan to stop telling me about veganism because I am not interested in it?

I work in an office with a couple of vegan coworkers. If I bring any animal products to lunch (even cheese, which they can smell), I'm likely to get a long earful about it. In the past, I've listened ...
ArnoldF's user avatar
  • 1,898
74 votes
9 answers
17k views

How to redirect a real-life help vampire to an alternate source of food... um... assistance?

I've recently had some troubles with a help-vampire in the office. She's about my age (late twenties), from India and she doesn't speak Dutch. She works in the same office as me, but not on the same ...
Tinkeringbell's user avatar
  • 33.9k
40 votes
12 answers
14k views

Colleague thinks that he is too slow

Background I am frequently working with a colleague who is a little bit junior to me (but not particularly "fresh" - he has been in the company for over 10 years in a lead developer/expert ...
AnoE's user avatar
  • 3,352
17 votes
5 answers
6k views

How do I tell certain customers they're not my number one priority?

Background I work for a very small company that's been around a long time, we do a mix of processing customer products and consultancy work. We have a reasonable mix of customers, working for ...
user avatar
14 votes
4 answers
4k views

How to signify to a coworker I'd like to become friends?

TL;DR I'd like to befriend a coworker with similar hobbies and values but I'm afraid I'd either sound awkward or flirty. How can I make him understand I'd like to become friends? Situation I've ...
avazula's user avatar
  • 14.3k
132 votes
13 answers
31k views

How can I explain to people that a programmer isn't a computer technician?

In Italy, a lot of people keep thinking that programmers are computer technicians. A programmer does completely different things, and in a company, I'm not the guy who should assemble your computer ...
Marco Salerno's user avatar
56 votes
6 answers
14k views

Dealing with / extricating yourself from having to listen to a superior's xenophobic rants

This could very well be on the workplace, but I'm looking for a IPS solution that will help me deal with this since the usual workplace advice ("Look for a new job") won't help me in this case. I ...
Magisch's user avatar
  • 10.7k
37 votes
6 answers
7k views

How to react when someone makes a racially charged joke about their own heritage [closed]

I have a friend who is a research scientist of Mexican descent. Before a work meeting, as he was wiping off the whiteboards to begin a presentation, he joked "This is the part that my people are best ...
Thomas Johnson's user avatar
23 votes
4 answers
3k views

How to tactfully respond to compliments when I don't feel I deserve them?

I'm the most senior developer on my current team, and I often get asked for help by my teammates. Sometimes when they ask for help, it's with something that I think is fairly obvious or easy to do. ...
Rainbacon's user avatar
  • 9,012
20 votes
8 answers
4k views

How to make sure I understood a work assignment correctly?

Due to my conditions as Aspie, I noticed quite a few times, in working environments, that I have a big communication barrier when it comes to task assignments. Most of the time, I have to work on a ...
dhein's user avatar
  • 2,532
10 votes
2 answers
3k views

How to ask a co-worker to sneeze into their elbow?

My co-worker has been sneezing about 8 times a day for the last two weeks. Like clock-work, I will hear him loudly sneeze out into the air every hour. He is not covering his mouth when he sneezes (and ...
jonstieg's user avatar
  • 211
10 votes
6 answers
1k views

How to handle office chitchat [closed]

I'm 30 years old, this is not my first job, and every time I start a new job, I promise myself to be more social and talk more with people. But what is happening is that I start disliking almost ...
icanttalktopeople's user avatar
124 votes
12 answers
27k views

How do I tell a co-worker that just because something is a hobby doesn't mean I want to do it for free?

I enjoy baking, and on a number of occasions have baked cakes or other desserts for people in the office to celebrate their birthday or a work-related milestone. I've done this of my own accord, ...
Fodder's user avatar
  • 2,447
84 votes
9 answers
19k views

Responding to people questioning my single status?

Background I am a computer programmer working as a graduate student under a biochemistry department in a university affiliated hospital. So far I have had a very successful career, having written ...
James's user avatar
  • 1,528
62 votes
11 answers
23k views

How to quickly remove yourself from a homophobic conversation?

My problem arises with the fact that I grew up in a very homophobic environment. I'm personally bi (so most people just take me as straight). Yet, I have homosexual friends with whom I'm very close, ...
Slapped Penguin's user avatar
54 votes
16 answers
19k views

How to act when people bring a baby to work?

I am uncomfortable interacting with babies because I personally don't find them cute or interesting to interact with. I also am not good at faking positive interactions with babies, because I really ...
SlowLoris's user avatar
  • 4,376
51 votes
16 answers
25k views

How to communicate to my co-workers that they don't have to say "bless you" when I sneeze?

I am slightly annoyed by my co-workers who say "bless you" everytime I sneeze. It feels awkward to me to reply with a "thank you". I usually only thank people when they really ...
arminb's user avatar
  • 1,246
47 votes
10 answers
11k views

How to communicate to a new coworker that I am not comfortable being touched?

Last week a new coworker joined our team, and yesterday we were both invited to eat lunch in the work cafeteria with some other colleagues that I have known for around a year and a half. As he, ...
Styxal's user avatar
  • 917
45 votes
16 answers
15k views

How to explain to coworkers that being vegan does not mean I know everything about it?

The other day, I was in a company meal with ~20 coworkers and someone offered me wine before adding: "At least you know this is vegan." (because I'm vegan). I don't like alcohol so I ...
Ael's user avatar
  • 17.2k
44 votes
7 answers
12k views

Can my sister convey to her womanizer boss by her body language and general behavior that she is not 'available' for an 'office romance'?

My sister recently accepted a high-paying job offer as office administrator in a local firm in our hometown in India, run by a divorced middle aged financial consultant. She is due to join next week ...
English Student's user avatar
36 votes
6 answers
11k views

How to politely decline painting requests from co-workers?

Update: Someone recently requested I paint something, and I said that I'm short on time. It was really painless Thank you guys! I paint to relax. During the office lunch break, I paint in my ...
Artie Ladie's user avatar
  • 1,025
36 votes
6 answers
9k views

How to deal with avoiding someone I don't like

Currently, as part of my work, I come into proximity with a lot of people (via getting food, to being at some company-wide meeting, or just at a mutual work friend's party), some of whom I do not like ...
Crafter0800's user avatar
  • 6,948
31 votes
7 answers
11k views

How to tell someone not to start a business?

My Tae Kwon-Do instructor is looking to make a little extra money on the side. He's hired me to do some graphics work for him, which I'm more than happy to do, but now I'm beginning to wonder if he's ...
Thomas Reinstate Monica Myron's user avatar
26 votes
8 answers
6k views

How do I tell someone that I need to fire him for lack of talent?

I messed up. Hiring good programmers is a hard problem, and I failed. A few weeks have passed since the new replacement for the junior developer position started, and it is becoming increasingly ...
user5761's user avatar
  • 271
24 votes
2 answers
4k views

How can I use a cell phone at work for work purposes without appearing to be slacking off?

Where I work, it is frequently mentioned by both co-workers and managers that many people find it rude when staff use cell phones while on duty because it is seen as attending to personal items while ...
Robert Columbia's user avatar
24 votes
6 answers
7k views

As an intern, how do I make friends with full timers?

I am doing my internship right now. My office has a large number of full timers. They are also much older than me, therefore our age group is not the same. Our job duties are also different, therefore ...
Susmitha's user avatar
  • 571
21 votes
11 answers
15k views

How to tell a colleague to take care of how he looks

I am working in a software consultancy company, and our job has a good deal of direct interaction with clients. We are a very international bunch of people, but we are based in Germany, and all our ...
A random lady's user avatar
18 votes
4 answers
6k views

How to have a talk with a coworker I'm scared of?

First off: I tagged this as Asperger since having Asperger's makes me have trouble understanding others' motivations, thoughts, and interests, as long as they differ from mine. That means, to ...
dhein's user avatar
  • 2,532
16 votes
3 answers
7k views

Dismissing questions about shameful disease at work

Soooo.... This week I'm quite sick, but not the kind of sickness that could prevent me from working, at least if it doesn't worsen at some point. It is not contagious at all, by the way. So I can ...
Kaël's user avatar
  • 1,500
14 votes
4 answers
14k views

How to deal with high tempered and angry people

Recently I faced a problem, My colleague is high tempered and we were discussing something on some topic. Suddenly he started shouting after that I realize that whatever I was explaining, he is ...
Code Lღver's user avatar
13 votes
2 answers
3k views

Friendly co worker suddenly distant/rude because of different views

There is a very nice co worker at my office. Every morning he comes to my desk and we chat for about fifteen minutes about how our kids are doing and whatnot. I really enjoy these morning ...
Quillion's user avatar
  • 240
13 votes
8 answers
2k views

How to tell other people that my job is only a job to me?

I don't know if this question may be confusing to some of you; so I will try to explain myself as well as I can. I have been interested in informatics and technology all my life. When I was young I ...
user avatar
11 votes
3 answers
1k views

Is a senior prohibited from asking for help from a junior level employee? [closed]

Background I am 32 years old. My background is in Physics and a bit in Computer Science. My previous experience was on ERP consultant business. I started my software engineering career when I was 29. ...
sawyer's user avatar
  • 289
10 votes
7 answers
2k views

How to not be "this annoying nitpicking Quality Engineer"?

I am a 23-year-old woman who was hired 2 weeks ago. As a Q&A engineer, I have to ask developers to change the way they are coding in order to improve the code's quality, maintainability, and ...
Ael's user avatar
  • 17.2k
10 votes
4 answers
4k views

How to tell a coworker to dress more appropriately for the office

One of my co-workers transitioned a year ago and she's really happy to be a woman, to finally being herself. However, she's putting too short skirt and short... I know that she's going through a ...
MaryM's user avatar
  • 111
10 votes
5 answers
2k views

How to approach the owner's handicapped son about him distracting our work?

For the last two weeks, our owner's son has been coming to our office daily to "work". However, he can't work. There's no work that can be assigned to him, and he is constantly distracting us by ...
Vylix's user avatar
  • 8,468
10 votes
4 answers
2k views

How to avoid lack of respect due to perceived youth / lack of experience

Background I'm a woman of small build (1,60m) and have a rather high pitched voice. If asked to estimate my age, people guess me at least 5 years, usually 10 years younger. I am 31, so people guess ...
Elmy's user avatar
  • 6,039
9 votes
4 answers
3k views

How to stop colleague from talking so much when subtle hints are not working?

Explanation Pronoun Game: "Using pronouns in dialogue to force other characters to ask for an explanation or conceal info." source The story: Every day I go to lunch with two of my colleagues (we ...
NotTelling's user avatar
9 votes
4 answers
6k views

How to avoid participating in a team-building trip without causing bad feelings for coworkers?

I've been in this company (and team) for almost 10 months now. Everything was O.K.: project, team, team-leader etc. But our TL (team leader) got a better offer from another company and of course, he ...
lukuss's user avatar
  • 1,324
8 votes
3 answers
1k views

How to avoid shaking hands?

I recently developed dyshidrosis, which makes my palms look disgusting. So I don't want to show my hands to anybody to see. People often do not looking at the hands when shaking, and this eczema ...
sean's user avatar
  • 203
8 votes
3 answers
937 views

Explaining to my boss that I didn't attend a company social event due to tiredness issues

TL;DR: I didn't participate in the Christmas work meal, how to say that it was because I have tiredness issues without sounding like a bad recruit? I'm newly hired in a company and I'm still on ...
Ael's user avatar
  • 17.2k
8 votes
3 answers
1k views

How to avoid endless corporate evening pubs but still have nice relationship with the colleagues?

Imagine yourself working in a company which has a team building tradition of going together to the pub on average two evenings a week and this is almost compulsory. But you do not get any pleasure ...
Anonymous's user avatar
  • 149
7 votes
1 answer
407 views

How can I correct text of another person during a chat without being pedant or making fun of the other person?

A written chat is not a good channel of communication for no verbal language, hence, is quite easy to make mistakes because each side might add different context to the sentences. This might cause ...
Santiago's user avatar
  • 1,332
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

How to communicate to someone at work that they are overstepping boundaries

My manager at work will frequently ask personal questions that I feel are none of his business as my manager. The questions are of a very personal nature. Asking about my parents, or what I am doing ...
KittenWithAWhip's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
553 views

How do I respectfully ask my co-worker if he had received false negative feedback made on my account?

Recently I have noticed that the relationship I had built with a co-worker seemed to be eroding. One of the possible reasons might be my manager giving false negative feedback to him on my account. ...
Storm's user avatar
  • 973
6 votes
3 answers
3k views

How to politely ask someone to repeat themselves

I work at a restaurant and have to take orders over the phone all the time. My hearing isn't the best, and a lot of times I have trouble understanding what the customer is saying. I often have to ask ...
sbl's user avatar
  • 163
6 votes
4 answers
9k views

How to approach someone about stepping down from their position?

A rather unfortunate situation has been developing at my workplace, which doesn't directly affect me but I would like to get involved because it looks like people are about to get hurt. A dispute ...
Xander's user avatar
  • 2,279
4 votes
1 answer
766 views

How to get coworker to stop saying clearly offensive stories when I can hear

I have a coworker (call him Tim) who says disgusting things and tells disturbing stories. I'm trying to think of a non-confrontational way to get him to stop. Often times he's not talking to me, but I ...
Yuftre111's user avatar
  • 143
2 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to address a Korean co-worker?

My current employer is a global software company with offices in several continents. The company tries to maintain a culture of conviviality. Our main communication medium is text chat in English ; ...
wip's user avatar
  • 121
1 vote
2 answers
1k views

Dealing with coworker who is excessively self-deprecating [duplicate]

The Problem My coworker is very self deprecating to the point where several of my colleagues are worried about him. He will make negative remarks on the quality of his work, and even himself, saying ...
HopelesslyAnnoyed's user avatar