Killjoy Co-workers – Episode #142

This :-/ = Killjoy.  This  🙂  = Happy Camper.  Below is a conversation on any given workday…

🙂 says, “Good morning.”

:-/  says, “…”

🙂  says, “Have a good day.”

:-/ says, “…uh huh.”

We all work with and know :-/ very well.  It’s hard to be 🙂 day in and day out when :-/ is killing the work vibe.

In my research I’ve found that rough 50% of Americans are relatively unhappy at work and some have no problem showing it.  What do you do?  How do you handle :-/ without scratching their eyes out before 3:00pm?  Here are a few suggestions that will help you Become Better at handling killjoy co-workers.

  • Smile – A smile can be healing and contagious.  One of you will eventually rub off on the other.   As my friend Sara Davis would say, “Love Wins!
  • Have a private heart to heart – Group settings may not be the best time to approach them when discussing their mood.  Confrontation in front of an audience can be threatening.  Speaking to them privately may open the communication flood gates.  We can never tell what’s going on in their personal lives.  Sample statement:  “It seems like you’ve been in a funk lately.  Is everything okay?  Just checking.”
  • Compliment them – Compliments may help them listen to you a little more.  Who can resist a good ego stroke?  Hopefully, they’ll begin to value what you say and eventually absorb your helpful hints to brighten their mood (when phrased properly).
  • Own your space – Set some personal proximity rules.  Only allow positivity in your set radius.  Sample statement:  “No negativity in my circle of happiness.  Take those negative thoughts and energy to the land of Misfit Complaints.”


Remember, it’s not what you say, but how you say it.  If you’re the boss remember it’s not your job to control your employees.  Ultimately, we can only control ourselves (and many times we can’t even do that).  You must create a welcoming atmosphere that’s good for communication.  This will make it easier to discuss mood and morale in a private setting.

 All we can do is try.  Make sure you’re coming to work prepared to spread a positive vibe.  If all else fails just remember that it could be worse, you could be married to them.  (SN:  If you’re married to them…  Bless Your Heart.  EMAIL ME!)


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