Actually he falls asleep very frequently almost everyday and our boss have never concerned or been mad about him. There was only one time that he snored quite loud and our boss patted him so he woke up. But since then he still falls asleep frequently and have not shown any signs to improve. Honestly I've been feeling strange about my boss's tolerating such a person, but I'm still not sure if I should keep pretending not noticing him sleeping, or I should tell him that sleeping at work is really not proper?

  • 5
    Does he do his work well? If sleeping doesn't affect his productivity, that could be the reason why its ok with your boss.
    – superM
    Commented Apr 27, 2013 at 7:29
  • Honestly I don't know how our boss thinks about his performance, but I'm sure that this colleague often sleeps when he is coding his unfinished tasks. Sometimes he asked me or another colleague for help, and then fall asleep while I'm googling about his questions.......
    – user917099
    Commented Apr 27, 2013 at 7:50
  • The thing is that since our boss never addressed anything about this colleague's sleeping at work, the rest of the company(we are a small company of about 40 people) just remain silent about this for more than 9 months, even sometimes colleagues passing by our desks while he was sleeping did looked at him with doubts. So I just wondered that if us remaining silent is right, or actually one of the rest of the company should break the silence by to talk to the boss, or by to just pat him every time he sleeps?
    – user917099
    Commented Apr 27, 2013 at 8:45
  • 2
    What country are you in, what country is he from? I've heard that in Japan napping during the job is accepted and sometimes even encouraged.
    – SBoss
    Commented Nov 20, 2014 at 13:06
  • This happened when I worked in Taiwan and both my coworker and I are taiwanese, and the boss is from China.
    – user917099
    Commented Nov 22, 2014 at 1:21

1 Answer 1


There are illnesses that cause people to sleep when they would not normally be asleep. If your boss knows that this person has such an illness and has agreed to a workplace accommodation for it, then he would not necessarily be at liberty to discuss this person's health issues with the rest of the team just as he might not be allowed to discuss any personal issues you have with others. If the boss knows about the sleeping, and in this case he clearly does, then let it lie. Give the person the benefit of the doubt that he is ill and continue with your own work.

  • 1
    And in the event that it is negatively impacting the workplace? Impeding your own ability to work due to the snoring? Impeding the teams dynamic due to the random loss of a team member? I am all for acceptance and optimism but if its causing negative effects outside of this employees work then it's something that should be discussed with the boss too. Even if only to make the boss aware that it is disturbing your own line of work.
    – user5305
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 8:01
  • 1
    @SpikyBlue - All you can really do is complain to your boss. But since the boss is aware all you are doing if you complain is drawing the attention of your boss to your activities. Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 12:35
  • 3
    @SpikyBlue - I'm not sure the OP has recognized any negative effects on the team or this person's performance. Seems like it's a matter of principle.
    – user8365
    Commented Apr 29, 2013 at 15:02
  • 2
    It's the boss's job to evaluate whether this is negatively impacting the workplace, and to what degree. Not the OP's. The boss is evaluating this individual's productivity; if it's bad, action will be taken. Meanwhile, focus on getting your own job done; if they snore headphones (especially good noise-cancelling headphones) are a marvelous invention.
    – keshlam
    Commented Nov 20, 2014 at 1:41

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