25 annoying communication quirks of other people

Winter treeThe communication habits and styles of other people can be awfully irritating. It’s never you and I. It’s always someone else.

That’s the consensus in my workshops and seminars when I ask people about communication hang-ups, quirks, and pet peeves. Okay, I admit I am certainly guilty of a few (not saying which ones!) How about you?

Complete this sentence: I get annoyed with other people and their communication habits when they:

1. Interrupt me

2. Finish my sentences

3. Fail to look at me

4. Chew gum loudly

5. Type on the computer while we’re on the phone

6. Mumble on a voicemail message

7. Lack clarity in project directions

8. Write their “out of office” auto reply with spelling errors

9. Complain, criticize, complain, criticize….

10. Say their phone number so fast on a voicemail that I can’t get it after replaying it seven times

11. Ask me how I am and their facial expression clearly reveals they aren’t listening and don’t truly care

12. Keep repeating information and making conversations and correspondence painfully long

13. Inject nervous giggles or laughter into conversations that simply aren’t funny

14. Forget to say their name in a voicemail message

15. Try to impress me by “topping” whatever I say

16. Get distracted with their gadgets and technology in meetings, conversations, and networking events

17. Talk too fast or too slow

18. Give wimpy handshakes

19. Send a 3-page email when a paragraph would suffice

20. Plan lengthy meetings with no agenda, and then order food

21. Talk louder to people with accents

22.  Deliver presentations in a monotone voice

23. Eat while on the phone

24. Call people out (in social media) in public instead of sending a private message

25. Forget to update their voicemail to let people know they are on vacation for 2 weeks

The red flags are up my friend. What can you do to improve your communication?

PS: If you’ve enjoyed this post, I invite you to check out my new Kindle book,  The Badass Book of Social Media and Business Communication. It offers tip-sheets and articles on interpersonal communication, online etiquette, branding, PR, blogging, content development, and more. 

(Photo Credit: Vietor)

11 comment on “25 annoying communication quirks of other people
  1. ” It’s never you and I. It’s always someone else.”

    How true.

    Susan I must say your blog is the
    worst place for a procrastinator. Your
    writing is so easy to read… and
    entertaining to boot. 🙂

  2. Thanks for reminding me that multi-tasking while I’m on the phone is rude. I do it so often I don’t even think about it anymore. Only one confession per comment….

  3. Greetings Susan,

    Loved this post.
    You remind us to take a look at where we could improve.
    Taking that step is truly the start of a life well lived ..in all areas of our lives…
    Have a great weekend.

    My best,
    Patricia Rossi

  4. Yikes Susan! 25 is a bit overwhelming to tackle all at once. I rank #16 as the #1 that annoys me. But, for myself, #1 is my definitely my worst habit that I have never been able to completely control 😉

    1. Hi Suzanne,

      So good to “see you here”…it’s been a long time! I am guilty of these as well, so yes, tackling one or two at a time is a good way to go.
      Thanks so much for reading and commenting. Good luck!


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