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8 Types of Slackers That Slow Down Your Team

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They arrive late and leave early, always busy and pushing others to do their jobs - lazy people are frustrating. How to recognize eight types of lazy employees and change their behavior.

1. Arrives Late, Leaves Early

“The natural enemy of those who come in too late is the clock,” says leadership expert Michael Bush, who researches team management and developed 8 types of lazy people with a colleague. Such an employee does not adhere to the work schedule and wanders in everyday life. This type of slacker is still harmless, but he can create a bad mood in the team.


Usually, this round of lazy people is easy to motivate to change their behavior: bosses should discuss the problem and appeal to their sense of responsibility. Sometimes they just need to be told to come on time.

2. Cheerful Slacker

A cheerful loafer is a friend, a talkative person. This person may be necessary to the team, he brings everything together, but you need to make sure he does his job in addition to his desire to communicate. If an employee is constantly talking, he also interferes with his colleague's work.


Tips for fixing a fun slacker - bosses should have a private conversation and ask him to restrain his desire for communication, because not only does he work less himself, but he also distracts his colleagues.

3. Operational Fuss

This type of person is a little more problematic. There are two types of operational anxiety. The first is a disorganized person who always gets bogged down in work, starts a lot, but does not finish anything. This not only slows down work: if a disorganized, restless person infects others with his way of working, he becomes a danger to the entire company.


The second type is more malicious. It's a simulator that pretends to work. You can recognize him by the fact that he tries to disguise his laziness: there are huge piles of files on his desk, which he does not process, but simply shifts. Or he wears a headset all the time to appear busy, or hangs a Do Not Disturb sign on his office door.


Unless entrepreneurs deal directly with operational turmoil, both types are difficult to identify. On the other hand, his immediate colleagues almost always know what is going on.


Such a person often looks for excuses - after all, he always has a lot to do. In this case, entrepreneurs can solve their problems together with the employee and sort out the excess. Bosses can take control of unorganized types as well as create incentives with specific goals and clear objectives. You must, like a boss, set deadlines for the bum. If a disorganized, restless person fails to organize himself, the authorities must teach him time and self-management.


If, on the other hand, such workers continue to pretend to work hard, after a warning, work with them should be terminated - in the end they refuse to work.

4. Phlegmatic Brake

The phlegmatic brake could work more but does not want to. He slows down the entire team with his slow pace of work. This can happen when a young colleague joins a team with older colleagues who have been with the company for a long time and who have developed their own work pace over time. Thus, the elders slow down the ambitious newcomer.


But not only the elderly, managers and specialists can be phlegmatic brakes. If, for example, an owner with his own online store has only one programmer, others are unlikely to be able to judge whether he is fast or slow. After all, they lack his experience.


How to deal with a phlegmatic brake: When dealing with brakes, one option is to keep time logs. This is tedious because employees have to write down every task, even the smallest one. The time log can show where an employee is especially shirking.


Also helpful: Even before bosses assemble teams, they need to make sure employees don't know each other too well. Then there are no well-rehearsed colleagues brakes.

5. Manipulator

The manipulator enjoys the goodwill of his colleagues. He may ingratiate himself or whine, make excuses, and let others work for him. He manipulates his colleagues. This can lead to co-workers overworking themselves or not doing their real tasks because they want to help.

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What can help in the fight against the manipulator? Bosses who do not work closely with such workers do not necessarily notice that they are subordinating others to their tasks. Anyone who finds out about this should talk to the manipulator and let him know that his behavior is burdening the team. It can also help in setting specific goals and clear and fair distribution of responsibilities within the team. Also, encourage the team to talk about this sort of task delegation more often.

6. Dazzling Showman

He is a grand idea, which he originally developed for self-presentation. He can sell well by deceiving others. Such employees greatly influence the mood of the company and can destroy the team.


A prime example is former Apple CEO, Steve Jobs. He reportedly suppressed employees' ideas and then sold them as his own.


If an employee reports that a colleague stole their ideas, you need proof—unless other employees report this behavior. There is one way to achieve truth in working with such a person: bosses can encourage employees to email ideas in the future and put their team leader or boss in BCC. In this way, the idea thief does not know that others also know about this idea. If he passes it off as his own, you can sue him.


Only the most important things should be discussed with such people in order to prevent them from stealing ideas. His colleagues can usually email ideas to the whole team. However, in this case, what defines every good team is already lost - trust.

7. Alpha Employee

Teams almost always develop an alpha position. Dominant, charismatic, or experienced employee who peers look up to. It doesn't sound wrong at first, but the alpha is a bossy person and naturally expects others to work harder and him less. Therefore, he is not a true team player.


This helps with such a worker: if you have multiple alpha employees on your team, you have to make sure they don't work on the same team - otherwise, they'll just push each other back and forth. And someone still has to do the main work.


More importantly, pay attention to the behavior of employees and instruct them to better integrate into the team, and not lead everyone around.

8. Vicious Bloodsucker

The evil bloodsucker is a psychopath among the lazy. He sees the weaknesses of others and takes advantage of them.

Example: an employee admits to a colleague over a beer after work that he would rather work for another company. The malevolent bloodsucker takes advantage of this knowledge and threatens to share his knowledge with the boss - unless a colleague takes on additional tasks.


A malicious bloodsucker can destroy a team or even a company. However, he is difficult to expose because he plays well, lies, and manipulates. Malicious bloodsuckers can be quite successful and rise high in the company, their behavior is often invisible and it takes a long time to notice their malicious activity. Luckily, these guys are the exception.


This helps with evil bloodsuckers: even good persuasion no longer helps with evil bloodsuckers, it has no place in your company.

Final Tip

As is the case with all typologies, people cannot be classified - each type of slacker occurs in different situations. Nobody is perfect. You should ask a supposedly lazy employee if there are other problems behind their behavior: “Maybe someone is doing less because of personal problems. After all, all good working relationships and every team should be built on trust, not mutual suspicion.

Also, try to form small teams - the smaller the team, the faster problems or people who are messing around will become noticeable.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Temoor Dar

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