5 ways to deal with lazy co-workers (that make the rest of your team look bad!)

Passive-aggression doesn’t work, telling the boss makes you look like a snitch and somehow they’ve developed a taste for expired milk in their coffee. Dealing with a lazy and unpopular co-worker is an up-hill battle but one that can be won.

The logic, you’d think, is that if you’re putting in extra effort to get a lazy colleague caught, it should trump their laziness. But for some reason it never works like that. I believe it’s called Sod’s Law but then again, I’m no scientist. I’m just a guy who wishes he has the conviction to be a lazy offender.

In a recent column from The Guardian, one reader writes in to bemoan their lazy colleague. This particular offender goes home at lunchtime when she doesn’t think there’s any work to be doing. That just ain’t right, so here are our 5 best ways to deal with lazy co-workers without waging war.

1. Complain to the offender about the lack of standards

“Some people, eh. I have no time for laziness”, you say out of the corner of your mouth to the office’s resident lazy offender. They nervously reply, “haha… yeah”. That’s all it takes to get the seeds of doubt sewed. Once you make lazy offender insecure about their work, results will be slight but noticeable over time.

2. Learn the ways of lazy

Nobody likes a goodie-goodie, but no-one likes a lazy worker either. You’ve got to decide which one you want to be if you want to bring forth change. Learning how to slack off successfully might introduce you to a new, interesting way of living but it might also cost you your job.

3. Unload your work on them

If they’ve got all this time to goof off, how long until people catch on that the lazy offender has a pretty clear schedule? Use this to your advantage by dumping all the work you don’t want to do on their desks – that’ll teach them for showboating.

4. Be an anonymous snitch

Drop an anonymous hint down on your bosses lap that the lazy offender is, well, lazy and an offender. Like we said in the beginning, nobody likes a snitch but desperate situations call for desperate actions. Don’t be proud of your actions but trust that you’ve done the right thing for yourself, the office and the world.

5. Do some research

Before actually doing any of the four suggestions above, do some digging around the lazy offender. Maybe they have kids that need picking up; that’s why they leave early. Perhaps they’re amazing at their jobs and can get all their work done early. Or, most likely, they’re just a lazy offender. If they are the latter, feel no remorse as you deliver a swift dose of justice onto their desks.