How to deal with a coworker who takes too much free time

Mindfulness is a good habit to learn in life and at work. For the latter situation, it could mean biting your tongue when your coworker insists on completing a project in a way you deem ineffective, or keeping silent that their workspace is so crowded you can hardly tell there is an office below.

But what happens when a coworker’s behavior negatively affects your work experience? At this point, staying silent becomes much more difficult.

This is a scenario that you may run into if you have a coworker who constantly seems to be out of the office, whether it is because he is sick, needs time to take care of a case. personal or take yet another. Day off. Of course, if the frequent absences of this colleague do not affect you, then there is nothing to say. But if the fact that your coworker is away a lot means you have to take over, it can certainly leave a bitter taste in your mouth. Here’s what to do if you constantly put yourself in the shoes of an absent colleague and quickly lose patience.

IMAGE SOURCE: GETTY IMAGES.

Complain to your manager, not your colleague

The fact that you find yourself taking over the workload of your absent colleague is actually your manager’s fault, not your teammate’s fault. Your boss should have a back-up plan in place when employees are away, so if you’re the one who constantly bears the brunt of your coworker’s absences, this is something you shouldn’t hesitate to address.

Explain to your manager that while you’re happy to participate in the occasion, you think you’ve done it way too often for comfort lately. In addition, make it clear that you are concerned that your own workload will start to suffer if you regularly take on tasks that should be the responsibility of your often absent colleague. Hopefully, your boss will find that he or she needs to either address your coworker’s excessive absences or find a way to more evenly distribute the work that is not done.

In addition, although you should not directly complain to your colleague that his frequent absences are disrupting your work schedule, you can kindly ask for a notice of scheduled time off so you can prepare to take over that person’s duties if necessary. It is not an unreasonable thing to do, especially if it is clear that you are the go-to backup.

In that sense, it wouldn’t hurt to ask nicely if things with your coworker are going well. As far as you know, he or she is struggling with a chronic illness, a problem with a child or a spouse, or a mental health problem, so even if he or she can appear since that person is constantly away from the office for no good reason, there may be a solid explanation involved. Of course, your coworker doesn’t owe you that explanation – it’s between your coworker and their boss. But if you To do find out that your coworker has missed seven or eight days of work in the past month because he or she is struggling with fertility treatments, complications from minor surgery, or an unpleasant divorce, it could make you less bitter to have to step up.

At the end of the day, you have every right to say something if a colleague is constantly out of the office and you have to take charge of their workload. You just need to bring it up with the right person (your boss) and with the right attitude, so that you don’t end up looking bad in the process.

About Gertrude H. Kerr

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