You’ve had it. It’s the last straw. That annoying co-worker of yours has you at the end of your rope — and you are seriously thinking about complaining to the HR?department.

 

But just what is the etiquette on tattling on a co-worker? According to Lynn Taylor, workplace expert and author of the new book Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant (TOT), you need to be up front but also aware of how delicate of a situation it is.

 

“‘Tattling’ — giving up on speaking openly and honestly with a co-worker, and instead telling a superior — should not be your first choice,” she instructs. “In a conflict, you should begin by dealing directly with the source.”

 

If the situation has escalated to the point where direct contact is not an option, Taylor suggests going to your boss. “Your direct boss is more involved, and may even be offended if you skip over him or her in asking for help.”


But Taylor points out that getting a manager involved should not be used as a method of avoiding face-to-face confrontation. “The boss will most likely speak with the other person after, and then all three of you will sit down together.”


It’s important to note that an “annoying” co-worker is much different than a co-worker who harasses or harms you in any way. If his or her behavior is damaging, a manager or human resources will need to be told.