The Absolute Worst Coworkers People Have Ever Had To Put Up With

Frustrated woman looking at computer
Photo by Elisa Ventur on Unsplash

While we may be happy in the job we're at, we've likely all encountered one of those coworkers who has this special way of ruining the whole work day for us.

But where some of us have only had that annoyingly talkative or meddling coworker, others have encountered far worse things.


Employees were ready to share their darkest coworker experiences when Redditor drlqnr asked:

"What's the worst coworker you've ever worked with?"

Every Workplace "Needs" a Savior

"I have several bad ones but the one that drives me the craziest is a lady who creates problems just so she can solve them."

"Ugh. She takes a simple job, finds the one tiny issue, blows that up and freaks everyone out, and then 'solves' it so she can be the hero."

"Just take one minute to fix the issue in the first place. It would save the literal hours she spends working everyone up so she can be their savior."

- SylkoZakurra

"I have a coworker who's very old-fashioned and strongly believes that males and females cannot be friends. Well, it just so happens that my manager and I, a male and a female, happen to get along quite well because of our similar ages and interests."

"She reported me to the other managers for it and accused me of sleeping with him."

- rosatenena

Why Were They Even There?

"My coworker likes to initiate conversations, then does long pauses where you go to say something back, then he cuts you off and keeps talking. He has entire conversations almost entirely by himself."

"He also likes to make changes to my paperwork before it's turned in... It ends up riddled with spelling mistakes while he tries to make the content look smarter. Fortunately, it's all electronically stamped with who made revisions."

- Inu_yashu

Distractable

"I worked with a girl who would sometimes just lay on the floor and play on her phone. She would routinely flip out about something her boyfriend did and just start screaming curse words, sometimes in front of customers."

"She was eventually fired for smoking weed while on the clock."

- AtlantaFieldClowns

Starbucks

"I worked at Starbucks for a year (one of the very worst years of my life) and while I was there had a coworker named Eric."

"I was at the till the day Eric came in with his resume, and there under his name he had typed 'Architect of Imagination.' Eric was an aspiring writer, but he had trouble stringing a sentence together."

"He couldn't be on the machine because he couldn't remember how to use it or how any single drink was made. He couldn't be in a support role because he had no way of predicting or understanding what anyone else on the floor needed or even was saying. He couldn't be at the register because he couldn't mark a cup and even our most patient customers would inevitably raise their voices at his incompetence."

"Reliably, he would genuinely look like he was about to cry. I was so torn between rage and pity... he made a terrible job so much harder, but he was just so breathtakingly, pitifully, shockingly dumb. I have never met anyone like him, before or since."

"One night, I was thinking about something particularly vicious I had said in response to something particularly baffling Eric had done and found myself wondering about his life outside of our store. Was the world scary and confusing to Eric? Did it seem like life was just happening to him? I imagined him standing in traffic, looking vaguely surprised and confused, forgetting how he had gotten there."

"I looked him up on Facebook and was pretty disturbed by what I found."

"Eric didn't look awkward or scared on Facebook. He looked stylish and suave. He had product in his hair. Beautiful women in expensive-looking clothes smiled in his photos. Several posted on his wall, expressing what a good time they'd had with him recently, often citing a 'writing sesh.' It felt like I was on a different plane. It felt like I was having a stroke."

"So then my question became, who is Eric?? And who is scamming whom?"

"The popular theory in the store was that Eric was essentially a method actor, doing research for a book or script. I came close to asking him about it a few times, but I was so afraid that I was wrong."

"I imagined myself over and over asking, 'Are you a method actor, or are you really and truly this stupid?' It just wasn't something I could bring myself to risk."

"I wonder about him all the time, actually, and who he might be terrorizing today."

- systauroo

New Skills

"I worked with a guy who couldn't learn new skills. When he started he had to learn new programs and processes, just like anyone would at almost any job. He couldn't pick up on it, whether it was where to click in a software to get a certain result or how to fill out a report."

"Everyone on my team took turns showing him the ropes and it never sunk in. I remember being so frustrated because he could not figure out how to minimize a window. 'Top right corner, click on the straight line.' It took three to four seconds for him to drag the mouse to the corner and then he'd hover around it but never on it."

"Super nice guy, but impossible to work and collaborate with on projects because so much time was wasted."

- elevenghosts

Refusal

"I worked in a law office with a secretary who refused to do anything because 'she didn't know how.' She couldn't do documents in Word, scan or use the billing software and refused to learn. In a crunch, she would take things home for her grandson to do."

"Somehow she was hired on full-time after being a contractor (What the f**k?). When she was hourly she called in sick so she could just work enough to keep her Medicaid and government benefits."

- moekey

Good Recommendation

"I hired a cook on a good recommendation. He was just fine the first two weeks. Then I noticed food going missing. Then supplies started going missing. Then a customer told me that he had been adding auto 30% tips his food purchases."

"When I looked at the books, I saw that he had been adding 30% tips to ALL the credit card sales. And the cash rings were off from what should have been sold. I fired him that day."

"The next day he came in and apologized. Said he was on drugs and was going to rehab. I wished him well. The next day he tried to break in after close and was caught. Id**t."

- sirnando138

Taking Advantage of the Newbies

"I had a manager once who dumped trash on my desk on my third day there. She said it was to remind me that taking out the trash was part of my job description (it wasn’t, I was a research assistant at a mortgage firm)."

- litkat16

"Not necessarily a 'coworker,' but my old supervisor literally told me not to think, even if it's wrong that I do things her way, and not to ask questions because I should already know what to do. I had just gotten the position."

- mutantandproud95

The Worst

"My worst co-worker was one I worked with when I was a cashier at Walmart. She approached me and asked me to cash out her paycheck. I was still new at the job and never got training on how to do that function."

"She was sympathetic, so she walked me through how to do it. The transaction was over and done, and I went on about my day."

"I got called back a couple of days later by my managers and they circled me in an office and accused me of stealing. After tears, videotapes, and telling them what happened, they told me that apparently, this coworker of mine had stolen not only from me but several other people that day as well. They just wanted to confirm I wasn't in on the deal."

"F**k Walmart, and f**k that b***h for almost getting me arrested."

- jellojocks

No Negative Vibes

"Context: I work in a hospital as a nurse’s aide and my department focuses on transporting patients around the facility for tests and room changes. I work the night shift and this person started their shift at 6 AM."

"There was this lady I worked with that just had the nastiest attitude. Normally I can get along with most folks but this person just brought the whole room down with negative vibes. Nothing was ever good and she always had bad shifts."

"One thing she did that upset a lot of people was take patients down for x-rays and leave them down there to return to our office. The big thing to remember here is that even the lengthiest x-rays take maybe 10 minutes at the very most (2-5 mins on average for the scans). Every morning we got x-rays to do and I had to send her back down to return patients to their rooms after the x-ray technicians called right as she got back to our office."

"The instances of leaving patients were common, so I informed my boss several times in person and by email. Apparently, she had an attitude with every other department we worked with and never informed nurses that we were moving their patients (big no-no when meds and vital signs need to be done)."

"One day, she had abandoned a patient in the ER waiting room when they were waiting for a ride home and told no one, so security had found a patient just sitting alone for 15-30 mins without supervision."

"It took this and a year of recorded evidence for this person to finally get fired. When that happened, it was like a dark cloud lifted and a lot of people were relieved."

"Oh, and she tried to get various employees around the facility to sign a form to argue against her case. One person signed."

- Melissa-Crown

The Shrew

"When I was an intern, there was this old shrew who would call people into her office (my cube shared a thin wall), gossip, then call those people in to tell them what was said, etc."

"She would try to frame people for s**t she did wrong. She was so arrogant. And she refused to adapt to workforce modernization. For example, she refused to learn how to hyperlink in emails, documents, etc. A real ray of sunshine she was!"

- mandz_camz24

"I worked in childcare, and they had hired a new assistant/trainee teacher for my room(each room has 2 teachers)."

"She just constantly argued about the dumbest s**t, and always tried to argue with me about both company and state childcare policies because 'that’s dumb.' She also was late every day during her first week there."

"It all just started adding up until I was changing diapers and she was holding a 2-year-old child on her lap. I see a child biting another child and said, 'You need to go help them,' as I have a child in the middle of a very explosive poopy diaper change up on the changing table and can’t leave him there obviously."

"She didn't get up. I repeated it, and she said, 'Well, I have this kid on my lap,' so I said, 'Take him off your lap.' She responded, 'He’s strong,' like this grown-a** adult is unable to move a two-year-old off her lap because of some weird super strength."

"Then the child bit the other child again and at that point, I was mad and told her to get up and help them now. She then proceeded to say, 'So what, I have to watch these four kids while you just have ONE up on the table?!' like I was somehow supposed to have multiple children on the table at once to make her job of sitting on the floor making sure kids don’t get bit twice in a row easier, and our ratios were 4:1 anyways."

"I finished my diaper change, stuck my head out the door to my supervisor, and told her, 'Get this lady out of my room,' and they did after and wrote her up after reviewing the footage of the incident. She was fired for no-call, no-showing the next week. I’ve worked with a lot of idiots in childcare but she was so s**tty in such a short amount of time."

- ameliadenice

This is clearly where coworker horror stories begin, and we can only imagine where these stories would go if these coworkers had stayed in their positions.

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