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Frustrated With Co-Worker

Savvy Confessions: Co-Worker Is Not Working

This anonymous posting comes from our Savvy Confessions group:

I just need to vent. My coworker is annoying me. We work as receptionists, and it's just the two of us sitting behind one big reception desk. Our computer stations are about 8 feet apart. The main path to our desk leads directly to me, so I understand that most guests are going to walk right up to me. I've also been here longer, so many of the regulars come to me, too. That's cool.

Now, we're supposed to greet people as they arrive and then assist them, but lately she's just been buried in her computer screen all the time. I'll be in the process of helping a guest, and there will be another guest waiting off to the side (my side), and then a couple more guests will walk up and stand behind the one I'm working with, and they all start to crowd in on me at once. I look over at her, and she's just staring at her screen. Our priority is supposed to be the guest in front of us — for the most part, we don't have other assignments to work on, so whatever else is on the screen is personal, not business.

Ugh. It's been bothering me more and more lately, so I've started checking the lists at the end of the day, and I've often done the majority of the day's work. There's no one to supervise us on site, so my options are to either tattle about her to our boss, which I would rather not do because otherwise we get along great, OR say something passive aggressive to get her to start paying more attention to what she's doing, or just let it lie and wait until I get transferred to another position (my boss has been watching for an opening/promotion for me.)


OK so that's my rant. Thanks for listening!

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onlysourcherry onlysourcherry 6 years
First of all: don't tattle. It will look really bad on you. Second of all, my guess is that you are not the only person who has noticed this behavior. That's probably why you are about to be promoted and she is not. Finally, you could always just say to the person in line "Sally can help you out on the other side right over here." or gently prod her to call them over "Sally, would you help out the woman in line?"
brilliance13 brilliance13 6 years
I would begin with the list and sit down with her to say hey let's split up the responsibilities.. I've noticed the guest lines get quite long and if we can determine who can do what on this list maybe we can get the guests through faster. I feel it's non confrontational, you didn't directly say SHE wasn't doing work. Only that you wanted to work collaboratively to get everything done. I like to do a lot of tasks myself and found at the end of the day I'm the only one that is burned out so I am starting to delegate more and if they look at me blankly, I say, is this an acceptable plan? Are there any concerns you have about doing this? Le'ts talk about it. Usually they will take a stab at it even if it's relatively new to them. This frees up more time for me to attend to the 1000 other things on my list.
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