I started at this company in Europe 5 months ago.

I was placed in a small team within a company of about 150 people. This team is a stand-alone team and does not collaborate with any of the other teams within the company. The company has a relaxed work environment, you can come in late without issues, there's numerous game consoles and fussball tabels.

My coworker, E, is in the same position as I am. Yet because of his long time at the company he is unofficially considered to be a 'lead'. He will have final say on something and our product owner, who is also our manager, is his best buddy.

Upon joining I quickly noticed that E spends about 2,5-3 hours a day behind a game console. Another hour or so is spent outside, smoking. The manager also smokes regularly and will join him for a game every once in a while. The manager claims this is part of the creative process and it's important to give creative people their space. 'As long as the work gets finished'.

It does, because any timeframe E gives for whatever he needs to do is very long. Brainstorm sessions of 3 hours with no outcome other than how cool that new game is or 'I need another day because I just couldn't set my mind to it yesterday'. All these hours are written up to our clients so my company nor my manager really feels the pain, the manager doesn't even seem to really care. I feel like we could be doing twice as much good work in the same time as we are doing now, meaning we could basically earn twice as much as well.

I decided to ignore it but E noticed I finished my work much faster and I feel like he is now giving me bad feedback on purpose just so I have to go back and redo work and need more time. I can't prove this of course, but he does give me the feeling.

I'm scared to go to HR because I don't want to be that person and 'snitch' on my coworkers.

I feel like my unproductive coworker is costing the company time and money, yet our manager doesn't seem to care. Do I report this and if so, to who?

  • @dwizum In that question everyone is aware and wants to keep the person out of pity, this manager doesn't care and I think higher up has no idea. Apr 3, 2019 at 18:32
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    This is a very close duplicate of another currently active question, and many others regarding what to do about others' performance. Can you describe how your situation is different enough to not be a duplicate?
    – dwizum
    Apr 3, 2019 at 18:33
  • @JoeStrazzere Broadly, I agree with you, but there's no such thing as a "Snitch". You essentially have enablers and people who care. If you label people who care snitch then that creates a toxic culture that tend to alienate people who care... Then you have a culture of people looking the other way on bad processes everywhere because no one wanted to be labeled a "snitch". Which will just rot at the company culture. Apr 3, 2019 at 18:34
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    I think your interpretation of that other question is based on the OP's speculation, which isn't really important. To be honest, it really doesn't matter, because the answers are the same.
    – dwizum
    Apr 3, 2019 at 18:34
  • Is this worker personally causing you time ( preventing you from completing your assigned tasks ) and money (reduced salary)?
    – sf02
    Apr 3, 2019 at 18:36

1 Answer 1


You are not his manager, so this is none of your business.

In addition his manager seems to be aware of his behavior and fine with it, so just ignore it and focus on your performance.

  • But if nobody reports this to anyone higher up, they will never find out since the manager does not care. Am I then not just as in the wrong if I look the other way? Apr 3, 2019 at 18:23
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    You can be sure that if your coworkers behavior would affect productivity of the team or the company your manager and the chain of command would notice pretty fast. Again, none of your business.
    – Simon
    Apr 3, 2019 at 18:26

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