Grumpy Coworkers, Computer Problems Increase Worker Stress Levels

February 11, 2010 ( – A new survey found grumpy or moody coworkers and computer problems top the list of workplace irritations that cause workers stress.

Nearly two-thirds of the 1,836 people surveyed by Opinium Research said their stress levels have been increased by office irritations, and one in 10 have left a job because of them, Reuters reports. 

The Top 10 office irritations are:

  • Grumpy or moody colleagues (37%)
  • Slow computers (36%)
  • Small talk/gossip in the office (19%)
  • The use of office jargon or management-speak (18%)
  • People speaking loudly on the phone (18%)
  • Too much health and safety in the work place (16%)
  • Poor toilet etiquette (16%)
  • People not turning up for meetings on time or at all (16%)
  • People not tidying up after themselves in the kitchen (15%)
  • Too cold/ cold air conditioning (15%)


In addition, according to Reuters, when asked what they think is the most annoying office jargon, respondents said:

  • Thinking outside the box (21%)
  • Let’s touch base (20%)
  • Blue sky thinking (19%)
  • Blamestorming (16%) (sitting down and working out whose fault something is)
  • Drill down to a more granular level (15%) (Look into something in more detail)
  • Let’s not throw pies in the dark (15%) (we need a plan rather than a haphazard approach)
  • I’ve got that on my radar (13%)
  • Push the envelope (12%)
  • Bring your A-game (11%) (Be ready to do something to best of ability)
  • Get all your ducks in a row (11%)

Last August, a survey by Accountemps unveiled senior executives also have a list of words and phrases they find annoying (see Buzz ‘Off’: Some Workplace Jargon is Annoying).