Ever get the feeling that being at work with the lads is more like being on a sitcom than a work site? Like the best sitcoms, every member of the cast (or in this case, your work crew) is a true character, each with their own unique flaws, traits and quirks.
Whether it’s the practical joker, the one who’s always got a story to tell, or the one you can normally count on to be napping in the van while you’re trying to get the work done, there’s certainly never a dull moment with all these personality types around.
But which one are you? Joker? Hoarder? Mr Serious?
The next time you get a tea break, take five minutes to determine which of these tradesmen personality types best describes you and your mates.
The grizzled veteran
Most likely to: Remind you how much harder things were in his day
He’s the rugged elder statesman of your crew, the one who has been in this game since you were a wee lad and likely has all the war stories to prove it.
You name it, he’s been there, done that, and would have probably bought the t-shirt if t-shirts weren’t such a luxury back in his day.
He doesn’t mind telling you all about the things he’s seen and done working on countless sites over the years. To be fair, you don’t mind listening to them either, even if you can’t help but think that some of those stories seem a bit far-fetched.
Did he ever tell you about the time he had to get up at three in the morning, walk 20 miles to the site with no shoes and work for 25 hours for tuppence a day?
Most likely to: Trick as many people as he can into doing the plaster bag strength test.
Ah, the good old-fashioned prank – a staple of your trade since time immemorial. You love the occasional practical joke as much as the next chap, but this lad takes things to a whole new level.
If he’s not nailing your toolbox into the cement, he’s ruining your afternoon brew by replacing the sugar with salt, or otherwise coming up with some elaborate scheme to get a laugh at someone else’s expense, all in the name of good, friendly banter, of course.
Heaven help you if you’re the new guy on site when this clown’s in town.
Most likely to: Go for a long stand
Oh so young and oh so naive, this enthusiastic rookie is eager to do a good job and will do just about anything to impress.
Unfortunately for him, that makes him the perfect target for our friend The Clown. Not that he’s the only one pulling a prank or two on the hapless newbie.
Admit it, you can’t resist sending him out to find a left-handed hammer or a new bubble for the spirit level. After all, it’s practically a right of passage for any tradesman worth his salt.
Don’t worry, our gullable apprentice will one day get his chance to pull the pranks once it’s someone else’s turn for a little-lighthearted hazing.
Most likely to: Have that hammer you’ve been trying to find for the past two hours
Every tradesman needs a good set of tools and the right materials to get the job done, but this borderline-klepto needs all of your tools and materials too.
Okay, so he doesn’t do it maliciously, but you can bet any money that if you don’t have enough screws, you can always count on him to have them in plentiful supply.
Just be sure that if you get the screws you need from him, you do it when he’s nipped to the loo. Like that one kid you always remember from nursery, our friend The Hoarder doesn’t like sharing.
The ladies man
Most likely to: End up embarrassed on your work’s night out
He’s had more women than you’ve had hot dinners, or at least that’s what he tells you at every possible opportunity.
“You won’t believe this girl I brought home last night,” he says.
And he’s right too, you don’t believe it, because whenever you go for a lad’s night out, this would-be Romeo can’t even pull a muscle.
Most likely to: Say “Come on lads, let’s stop messing about.”
If the clown has one mortal enemy on your work site, it’s stern-faced Mr Serious. He’s not really one for practical jokes, or for fun of any kind for that matter.
No, sir, this lad is all business. He’s got no time for banter or mucking about. He wants to come in, get the job done and get it done well, then clock off and go home.
Of course, that does make him the victim of almost as many jokes as The Apprentice, but at least it means we know at least there’s one person on site getting some work done!
Most likely to: Call in sick most Monday mornings
There’s a lot of work to be done and you need all hands on deck, but our mate, the slacker, is nowhere to be found. So you head out to the van and there he is, as predicted, getting a bit of shut-eye in the passenger’s seat.
Sure, he’ll get up when you tell him to, but he’ll then spend the rest of the afternoon finding any excuse not to get anything done.
Need someone to make a ten minute trip for supplies? He’ll be the first to volunteer and the first to turn it into a two-hour excursion because, you know, “you wouldn’t believe the traffic, lads.”
If this guy only put half as much work into his actual job as he did in finding excuses not to do it, you’d have the whole project completed in half the time.
How many of these personalities do you recognise on your site? Let us know in the comments below, or share with us any common tradesman types you think we’ve overlooked by getting in touch on Facebook and Twitter.