Back To Career News

How Not To Act When You Don’t Like Your Coworkers


Very few workplaces are without occasional bickering and drama amongst co-workers. The reality is, if you spend that much time with anyone, you are likely going to start becoming annoyed by any number of pet peeves or idiosyncrasies. Although most of us are pretty good at refraining from throat punching people we work with, public bickering can be just as bad. Especially, if you happen to be employed in a public venue, such as the news.

Let’s be honest. Most quarreling between adults is going to look silly and childish, and being openly passive aggressive or publicly insulting them isn’t going to fool anyone.

Gawker recently shared a video illustrating exactly how not to deal with coworkers who get on your nerves. Anchor and former Miss Pennsylvania, Nicole Brewer, and Meteorologist, Carol Erickson, who apparently are not BFFs. In a series of video clips between the two, you can cringe along with the rest of the viewers of Philadelphia’s CBS3, as the two exchange jabs, often followed by nervous giggling. Dubbed by The Philly Post as “master class in highly passive-aggressive behavior”, it seems a more appropriate example of how to look like grown up fools on television.


Do You Know What You're Worth?

1.  Sarcasm Only Works in the Office When it’s Funny

Sarcasm in the workplace is a difficult thing to pull off unless it’s funny sarcasm. And even then, it has to be funny to nearly everyone, or you just end up looking bitter and crabby. In the first example, the meteorologist asks for an applause and all you see is Brewer slow clapping and making a face like she’s going to puke. Considering the relationship between Brewer and Erickson, maybe it wasn’t a good idea to ask for an applause in the first place.

2.  You Can’t Get Mad if No One Thinks You’re Funny

If you and a co-worker don’t get a long, you may want to refrain from practicing your joke-telling skills on them. In the next example, it appears as though news anchor, Brewer, is trying to crack a joke, when after a monkey story, she tells Erickson, “when it comes to the weather, we want no monkey business”. Of course, no one thinks this is funny except Brewer, who ends up snickering to herself as the meteorologist continues with the weather report. To make matters worse, when the weather report ends, Brewer comments that it’s “bananas” and then tosses out an insult that the joke is “probably lost” on the meteorologist.

3.   Keep Your Personal Feelings Private

Whatever degree of disdain you happen to feel for your co-worker should be kept secret and not obvious to the entire world, if you want to keep your job at least. Work is work and personal is personal. No one cares if you think Susan has bad taste in men or if you wish Matthew would comb his hair. 

In various battles between the meteorologist and anchor,  they are shown taking small jabs at each other with Erickson even questioning Brewer’s soberness, at one point . Even though they try to disguise each jab with a chuckle, it is evident that they don’t really care for each other. Although entertaining to a point, you have to wonder when the company will begin to see the squabbles as less cute and more as actions that portray the company negatively. Keep your personal feelings to yourself at work. Unload when you get home. That’s what spouses are for anyway.

4.  Outright Insulting Rarely Makes You Look Good

Erickson:  You haven’t noticed my halo today…

Brewer:  …because it’s manufactured.

Erickson:  It’s awful when you have to call attention to your own halo.

Brewer:  It’s the only way you’re going to get it.

<chuckle, chuckle, uncomfortable laughter.>

In the workplace, it usually doesn’t matter who is right, who picks the fight, or who has the most awesome comeback. When a person resorts to insults, that person is usually going to be the one who ends up looking foolish.

5.  Do Not Fight Publicly

Set up a meeting with management or meet for coffee outside of work. It is rarely appropriate to argue publicly whether in front of the entire accounting department, or on-air where thousands of people are witnessing and passing judgment from their sofas. No one wins in these situations and not only are your co-workers and viewers forced to choose sides, but it places a tremendous amount of negativity on the company itself.

Although there is the possibility that Brewer and Erickson don’t really hate each other as it seems, the communication between the two still showcases how important our relationships with our co-workers are, and how ridiculous they may appear to the rest of the office.

Tell Us What You Think

We want to hear from you! How would you deal with Brewer or Erickson? Share your thoughts on Twitter or in the comments!

More From PayScale

How to Deal with Difficult Co-workers

Tales From the Office: Co-workers From Hell

10 Ways to Drive Your Co-workers Insane

 (Video/Photo Credit: By AmazingLife247/

Christina Majaski
Read more from Christina

Leave a Reply

Notify of
What Am I Worth?

What your skills are worth in the job market is constantly changing.