I've read through some of the existing Questions here (such as Noisy office, how to tackle? and similar posts), and I don't see this being specifically addressed - feel free to point me to better Questions if they exist.

I work in cubicle-land (as so many of us do).

Our team (which is creative and/or programming-mentalities) is "right next to" very alpha-like Sales mentalities, who are loud, boisterous and constantly "uplifting" each other with exclamations, bull horns, high fives, etc.

With all of that, I now sit within 4 feet of someone who is frequently, randomly, drumming his desk, humming things out of tune, talking to himself out loud, etc, ad nauseum.

Any suggestions? I do not wish to make myself "the one" who has to ask HR or my Supervisor to deal with this - but I'm constantly ready to pop. I take breaks in the bathroom, lunch room, walking outside, to help cope with it. I wear headphones 2/3 of the day with music (sometimes blasting, probably annoying OTHER people) to drown this person out.

Unfortunately, despite he being a very nice and decent guy -- I'm finding REALLY do not want to be ANYWHERE NEAR HIM during the work day.

There is nowhere I can move to (apparently) to get away from this. We have "just enough room" here for who works here.

I love my job. I love my company. I love my colleagues. But I cannot stand sitting next to this person all day!

I can't fathom any solutions to this, but figured why not crowd-source the problem and see what happens. :-/

  • 1
    If it's just the noise, it sounds like you need better headphones. Or at least ones that are better at blocking out external noise. So... why haven't you gotten yourself a nice pair of noise-cancelling headphones already? – HopelessN00b Apr 21 '14 at 18:49
  • If the environment is impacting your ability to work, HR should be very happy to help. – bengoesboom Apr 21 '14 at 19:08
  • Hmmh, ear plugs? Work at home? – Vietnhi Phuvan Apr 21 '14 at 19:28
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    Work at home: Been there, done that, my position and interaction at work no longer allow this. Ear plugs: Har har. Noise Canceling: Haven't bought EXPENSIVE ones, but the ones bought BY MY BOSS FOR ME did not fully handle the issue. Plus when someone is DRUMMING ON THEIR DESK and your desks TOUCH... yeah, doesn't help :-( – AMM Apr 21 '14 at 21:32
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    You may have to simply start asking him to stop. If you do it enough times he may get annoyed enough to ask to be moved away from you. You also did not mention whether you had spoken to your boss about it. That seems an obvious choice, especially if your entire team is being assaulted by this guy. If he wants to get productive work out of you, it is your boss's responsibility to provide you with what you need to get the job done, and that includes a work environment conducive to working. – Francine DeGrood Taylor Apr 22 '14 at 16:00

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