Hormel Foods Corp. recently released the results of a study it commissioned on how cubicle inhabitants handle work stresses while effectively balancing their time and remaining reasonably sane.
Their findings revealed that today's average office worker not only deals with an increased workload, but also with overly talkative co-workers, tiresome catchphrases and shared office refrigerators that, if reported, could generate OSHA fines.
As one who recently lost her office refrigerator privileges (our mini fridge lost power over a holiday weekend, enabling my ancient inedible to make its presence known throughout a good part of our floor), I was intrigued.
According to the study, "More than half of Americans (51 percent) say the biggest source of stress at work is not the job itself, but their co-workers."
The study made gentle reference to a few types of office worker, such as the Gossip, the Tattler and the Flatterer. (Better known in the real world as Busybody, Rat and Brown-Noser.)
Those classifications reminded me about a recent conversation I had with a friend who was complaining about a "wannabe detective" in her office. He frequently appears at her desk, not so discreetly looking at what's on her computer screen and randomly picking at papers or objects that attract his attention.
"I think there's one of those in every office," I said, recalling a former co-worker who was bold enough to stand behind me and attempt to read over my shoulder.
I suspect there are certain types that most every office likely has.
There's the Skunk: someone who either has an aversion to deodorant or a propensity to abuse cologne. I've experienced scents so strong they made my eyes burn.