When first looking at the title of this post, you may be lead to think about what you wear to work. That is not the point I’m going to be discussing at this moment. (Although it may come up at a later time). What I’m referring to is how you do your work. Are you the type of person that procrastinates? Do you get everything done right away and then go looking for more? Or are you the type of person that does all of your work right away, but keep a little bit left so it always looks like you have more to do? Do you complain to your co-workers about every assignment given? Perhaps you try not to rock the boat when it comes to your workplace. Most people tend to be a hybrid of all of the different types of workers, and if you were to take a survey of your coworkers, you would find most claim they just “come in and do their job”. But when you look closer at them, from your perspective you can see that they generally fit into one of the following groups.
The Eager Beaver: This is the person who asks a million and one questions about every little detail in hopes of doing exactly what the boss is looking for. They really don’t have too much creativity to step too far out the lines, but as soon as an assignment is given out, they are usually the first ones to jump on it. While they may get the exact details of what the boss may want, they have a hard time “thinking outside the box”. They don’t like to take risks when it comes to their job (and probably their lives) but at the same time they are complacent at where they are in life. The funny thing about this coworker is that, while they are generally a nice person, people tend to find themselves very annoyed with this person. They are the ones who asks a question at the end of a meeting when everyone else is ready to go. They are the ones who hurry up and start an assignment before realizing that they already volunteered to help someone else perform another duty for the moment. They are the ones that start something without seeing how their piece can be completed much easier using the tools of technology (they are not very computer savy, so they do a lot of things the hard way).
THE PROCRASTINATOR: This is an obvious description of this particular work style. Generally this person waits until the last possible moment before (s)he starts on their work. Whether it is a big project or daily work assignment, they like to make sure everything else is tended to before they start on the work. They usually hide behind the “usual tasks” of having their cup of coffee while going around and obtaining all the items needed to complete their work. Speak to their direct supervisor to see if there is anything more pressing that needs to be completed first. Finally, before starting, they have to go to the bathroom so they won’t be interrupted when they do start their work. Hidden in between that time is usually an update on the scores of last nights games, the latest youtube video sensation, seeing about everyone's weekend (that they like). They also make sure to check their personal email and update their twitter status (assuming the company policy is not violated). The funny thing about this person is that they usually get their work done in time. Sure they may be a little stressed, or re-emphasize to all others that come up to them asking them general questions that they are “sooooooooo busy right now” but the truth-of-the-matter is they put themselves in that position. So in order to get the work done, they must sacrifice at the end of the day/project instead of just starting when they first received the assignment.
The Get-Along Guy/Girl: This person usually is everyone’s “friend”. They are very courteous, and greet everyone they come in contact with a big smile and hearty “welcome”. No one can ever say anything bad about this person. They are always working when you walk by their desk, but they always can stop and speak for a moment. They want to make sure they can help whoever has a question, regardless of what it may cost them in the long run. The only major issue is that being a friend and agreeing with everything everyone says is it can definitely play a toll on your own personal mentality. (In my current position, I am able to view many different things as they take place. This type of person always seem to come to me to vent.) While everyone may like the Get-Along Guy/Girl, (s)he does not like everyone. They tend to be very superficial and while they may maintain certain confidentiality, they continuously remind (at least me) why everyone likes coming to them. An additional problem is they tend to spread themselves thin and everyone else tends to use them as a doormat. The person says “yes” all the time to help people, but then they have to work extra hard to be current on their own personal workload. They are a great person to have around, but at the same time, other employees (especially within the specific department) tend to dump on this person.
While I say all this jokingly, there are these types of people at every place I’ve ever worked at. All of these people have their pros and cons, so no one is truly the “Perfect Coworker”. As long as everyone gets the work done, generally there are no problems. It only becomes an issue when a person doesn't pull their weight and others are forced to pick up the slack. The main thing to take away is to determine what works best for you.
What is your work style? What about those that you work with? Make sure to comment and share your experiences with us.