In an open plan office there is a person who works several bays away who spends their day laughing. Loudly. Repeatedly. The closest term to the behaviour of this person is that they are an office hyena. The sound they make is highly irritating.
Given that this person spends a large portion of their day manically laughing their head off, that everyone within 100m can hear this, and nothing has been done by the several managers in the area for several months, what is the best way to solve this problem?
- The person may fall into the category of 'not mentally normal'
- It is possible that this person is unable to understand how annoying they are
- The sound made by this person does upset people in the area with people flinching at particularly piercing sounds
- This is just one person exhibiting this behaviour
- While this behaviour is quite disturbing no one in the area can or will do anything about it with several people happily moving to another team to get away from the problem
- The person is of a similar level in a different team with a shared manager 3 levels up
To get an idea of what this situation is like play this mp3 loudly in 10 to 20 second bursts randomly every 5 to 15 minutes. This sound can cut straight through headphones and earplugs. Working in this office requires being able to interact with others so completely blocking out all sound is not an option.
I have not spoken to this person about this. I have not spoken to this person at all. Going near this person results in them turning away, looking down and leaving quickly. The team leader is an affable person for whom I have spoken to as you would to someone who works in the same office/area/section however the team leader avoids talking about the team. Other team leaders in the area avoid talking about that team. Due to this I am treading carefully before doing anything further as I suspect there is something here I can't see.
What I am thinking is that there must be a proper way to approach this type of situation. So far, talking directly to the person and talking to their team leader has been ruled out as options. My manager is green; this topic is avoided or dodged. The management above my manager is not an option to raise any issue with. HR is only engaged when serious CYA is required in this place and best avoided unless absolutely required.