If you’ve never had to handle a talkative, then the chances are that you’ve never really met one. Now, truth be told, there is nothing wrong with a little chitchat every now and then. Especially when the burden of work gets incredibly high, a good way to relieve stress is with a nice, calm conversation with a friend.

However, it is not in all cases that these conversations can be good. There are some people who just overdo it. They seem to always have something to say. They constantly move from their personal lives to the latest piece of entertainment they consumed, among others. This type of behaviour can be tiring, especially when you need to work or just think a little.

If you have to deal with someone like this, this article is for you. Here are a few tips to help you handle a talkative at work:

  1. Politely explain that you’d like to get back to work and be alone

Nothing beats a little bit of courtesy and politeness. As such, when you find that co-worker going on and on about the latest Nollywood movie, end the conversation politely and explain that you still have a few tasks on your desk. Emphasize your need to be alone so that they don’t offer to follow you to the office. For most people, this will send the right signal, and it’ll help curb the excessive discourse later on.

  1. Use earphones before they approach you

If you really want to concentrate and you don’t want to have a talkative person distracting you, you could put on a pair of earphones. Simple courtesy demands that you don’t disturb a person when they have earphones on as they might be on a call. Unless your talkative co-worker is absolutely obnoxious, he’ll respect this gesture and leave you to concentrate.

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  1. Use the “do not disturb” function on your device

The thing about talkative people is that they do not always come physically. Some try to reach you through calls all the time, even outside work. We really do not need to explain how much of an inconvenience this is. So, when working, put your mobile device on the “do not disturb” mode. It’ll silence all calls and messages coming into your device for as long as you want. When you’re done, you can then politely explain to your callers that you needed to concentrate on something important when their calls came in. As a responsible adult, your talkative friend should understand.

  1. Inform your supervisor

If you constantly find your co-worker talking and distracting you from work without changing, then you have to tell your supervisor. However, you must note that this is a “weapon of last resort.” Even when you do tell your supervisor, do not put it across in such a way that s/he thinks the talkative co-worker is absolutely obnoxious.


When you are doing all of these, you must remember that not every conversation is a waste of time. Even those that aren’t exactly about work are useful in building relationships that can help with work, among others. So, don’t just throw away every conversation as a distraction.