Kitchen quarrels lead to workplace warfare woes

The kitchen is the heart of workplace arguments and annoyances according to new research.

Research of 1,000 UK office workers carried out by leading household appliances retailer, revealed 67 per cent have had a falling out over kitchen cleanliness and washing up in the past 12 months.

Talking loudly regularly upsets half (52 per cent) of UK office workers, while lateness and poor timekeeping registered high on the list of frustrations for 45 per cent.

A third (37 per cent) cite bad personal hygiene, including body odour, coffee breath and cigarette smoke laden clothing.

More than a quarter (28 per cent) list inclusion in drinks rounds as a point of contention.

A quarter (23 per cent) of office workers report falling out over running out of milk, coffee and tea bags. Lost or stolen food and drink also caused frustration for 17 per cent of office workers.

When faced with these problems, 15 per cent have directly confronted a colleague, while a third (35 per cent) have sent a passive aggressive email or left a note.

Mark Kelly, marketing manager at comments, ‘The office is a place for productivity, although the research shows that things can boil over especially when it comes to kitchen etiquette. A harmonious workplace can be disrupted by small stresses, with the data showing those in typically more pressured industries and environments have a higher level of frustration, and lower patience threshold.’

Younger members of staff, those aged 18-24, were most likely to confront a colleague and resolve their issues.

Those working in financial services (93 per cent) report the highest level of office upsets, followed by information and communications (89 per cent).

Healthcare (85 per cent), real estate (84 per cent) and education (83& per cent) industries round off the top five industries most likely to see a workplace dispute.

Further reading on kitchen arguments

Owen Gough, SmallBusiness UK

Owen Gough

Owen was a reporter for Bonhill Group plc writing across the and titles before moving on to be a Digital Technology reporter for the

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