Misery Loves Companies: The 5 People in Every Meeting Ever

I’m sure all of my fellow cubicle or office dwellers can relate to the feeling of “ugh” that washes over you when you see a meeting request pop up in your email. And that’s mainly because you know that no matter what the topic of the meeting will be, all the players will be the same. Here are the types of coworkers that I’ve witnessed time and time again in meetings:

1. The Showoff – This coworker is not conducting the meeting, but you wouldn’t know it by the way they interrupt the speaker to try and take over. They’re not trying to help anyone, they’re trying to show everyone in the room how smart they are. And in the process, they end up extending the torture. It takes everything in me to not yell “If you know it all, why are you HERE?!”
If this is you: Either take over the presentation completely or bring some coffee to slowly sip throughout the meeting so your mouth will be occupied.

2. The Gun-Jumper – This coworker likes to interrupt people to ask a question that is currently being answered. If someone passes around a handout with information, they’ll raise their hand to ask a question that is answered in bold print on the first page of the handout. If the person who has the floor starts to say “two plus two equals f…”, this coworker will immediately raise their hand and ask “But what about two plus two? What does that equal?” Aaargh! Just give the person running the meeting a chance to tell you what’s going on. Hands down, ears and eyes open!
If this is you: Stop talking forever. Or at least just pay attention.

3. The Playback – This coworker is the opposite of the Gun-Jumper. The Playback likes to ask questions about something that was JUST explained. And usually they will wait until the speaker goes through a long, complicated explanation. Then at the end of the meeting, when everyone is about to finally be set free, they’ll ask the speaker to repeat and re-explain everything. They were so focused on asking their question, they couldn’t even hear when it was answered.
If this is you: See advice given to the Gun-Jumper.

4. The One Who’s Trying to Stay Awake – Full disclosure: this person is me. Normally when I’m included in meetings, there’s about 5 minutes worth of information that actually pertain to me. The rest of the time, I’m struggling to prop my eyes open. It doesn’t help that our conference room is usually very warm. God help me if the meeting is after lunch…full stomach, warm room, cozy chair…I feel like I’m being set up.
If this is you: Either prop your eyes open with toothpicks or overdose on caffeine before heading into battle. Or, in the most extreme cases, get up to use the restroom and never come back.


5. The Eye-Roller – Full disclosure: This person is also me. If you muted everything around you, you would still know what’s being said just by the facial expressions of this person. A scrunched up face means something doesn’t make sense. A blank stare means they’re thinking about how this meeting should have been an email. And an eye roll usually means that they’re fed up with one of the four people mentioned above. They can usually be counted on for a little comic relief, whether they mean to or not.
If this is you: Try to fix your face fast, because if the wrong person catches your WTF expression, it could lead to another meeting.

Now how many people are ready for battle the next time you go into a meeting?!


Please make sure that you follow my “helpful” advice if you are one of these 5 people. Did I miss any? What kinds of coworkers do you find in YOUR meetings? Drop a comment below!

R. Alexandria


Author: R. Alexandria

Since graduating college, I have had the honor/horror of working in publishing, which means that I am surrounded by creative and passionate individuals. The most valuable lesson I have learned is that “creative” is only a stone’s throw away from “crazy”. I’ve just about seen it all from my various cubicles over the years…from physical altercations to mental meltdowns. I created this blog to share with you some of the most hilarious, insane, frustrating, annoying, helpful, inspiring, and disgusting moments I have experienced in the workplace. I’ll also provide some tips should you ever find yourself in similar situations. These anecdotes reference situations from past and present (uh oh!) office positions. Names have been changed to protect the crazy innocent. Enjoy!

40 thoughts on “Misery Loves Companies: The 5 People in Every Meeting Ever”

  1. OMG….so true! Thanks for sharing! You put a smile on my face on this dreary day.
    And yes, I’ll be thinking about what you said while trying to stay awake at a meeting this afternoon. LOL 😊 😴

  2. OMG. I just found your blog today and I LOVE it! Just subscribed to get updates when you post. Have you ever watched the TV series Better Off Ted? I think you have to get it on Netflix or Amazon. You MUST watch it. (I always wanted to start a blog about “cubicle smurfs”, a reference in one episode of the show…never started the blog, and quick cubicle life 4 years ago).

    Also, you must listen to the podcast I Hate My Boss. I’m obsessed with it, and I don’t even work in that environment anymore! (I blog about podcasts, so I’m obsessed with podcasts in general, but this one is GENIUS).

    1. I haven’t seen that show but I do have Netflix so I’ll check it out. I’ll listen to the podcast too. I’m thinking of doing little video shorts to put on YouTube that will correspond with my posts.

  3. This is a very funny post! I’m more like the eye roller. Sometimes meetings be pointless and what’s worse are the meetings that are preparation for another meeting. Omg!

  4. This perfectly describes Monday morning meetings at my old job to a T! I’m pretty sure we all know someone who fits into all of these categories, especially #1 and #2. I also love observing other people’s hilarious reactions to #3. I won’t tell you what number I am but I’m sure you can guess XD

  5. Observed all the above situations before retiring. Dead on! Names popped up in my mind as I read through all–what a hoot! So funny! Look forward to reading your “Do I Look Like I Care” descriptions!

  6. LOL! I love your posts! This is so very true! I have always found there is one that is the constant throat clearer or cougher that you desperately want to scream at… or maybe I’m just focused on anything other than the meeting!

  7. So funny and true. I especially hate the person that asks questions that only pertain to a small percentage of people in the room. Ugh… can’t you just wait until the end or send an email????

  8. Hahahah this is so true. I have to admit that in school I was guilty of being the Playback. I used to always ask questions right before we were done with that subject. ops!

  9. Ahahah This actually made me laugh out loud! I hate the Mr?Ms Know-It-All-Look-At-Me-Im-Smarter-Than-Everyone-Else…. blluurgghhh! But yes, you are so right, there is always one of these. My attention span is limited so sometimes I struggle to keep my eyes open Lol Cool post 🙂

  10. jokes aside, why are your posts always so funny! but so true, they way you relay it as well, the comedic value is second to none. i thoroughly enjoyed reading this and always because i can relate!

  11. This was a light read and could associate to all those descriptions. I am the eye roll over type, I like the point that most meetings have 5 mins worth of information. Wonder how much time will be saved if we can be clear n concise in our meetings.

  12. ~Haha, great post, I can relate to all of these people. I’m so happy I now work from home and very rarely have to attend the meeting. I do miss the endless supply of coffee though.

  13. This is a totally funny but true post for anyone working in an office setting. As I read the article, I was already thinking of people that matches the description.

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