Workplace Safety—an Annoyance?


London-based Opinium Research recently released the results of its survey of 1,836 people on the things that annoy them about work. Turns out that lots of things bug lots of people. But what shocked me was that workplace safety was considered an annoyance. In fact, it made the top 10 list!

Top 10 Office Annoyances

The survey found the top 10 office annoyances were:

  1. Grumpy or moody colleagues (37%)
  2. Slow computers (36%)
  3. Small talk/gossip in the office (19%)
  4. The use of office jargon or management-speak (18%)
  5. People speaking loudly on the phone (18%)
  6. Too much health and safety in the workplace (16%)
  7. Poor toilet etiquette (16%)
  8. People not turning up for meetings on time or at all (16%)
  9. People not tidying up after themselves in the kitchen (15%)
  10. Too cold/cold air conditioning (15%)

Although some of these annoyances may seem trivial or minor, they can impact people’s lives. For example, nearly two-thirds of the people surveyed said their stress levels had been increased by office irritations—and one in 10 had left a job because of these annoyances.

Can someone explain to me how there can be too much health and work? Am I the only one surprised by these results?

Most Annoying Jargon

The survey followed up on the use of office jargon annoyance by asking what the most annoying management-speak phrases were. The top 10 results:

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

Now this list I totally get! Anyone have suggestions for additions to the list? For example, a colleague said she hates the phrase “going forward…..” As opposed to what—going backwards or sideways?