Hilarious Office Pranks to Spring on Unsuspecting Co-Workers

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If you work in an office, you’ve probably wanted to spice things up now and again with some mischievous fun. Rest assured that you’re not alone, as droves of office workers around the world share your fondness for pranking co-workers.

Feast your eyes below on some of the best office pranks of all time. As long as they don’t get you in trouble with the boss, these pranks are a surefire way to make the work day a bit more interesting.

The Water Cup Surprise

If you’re looking for an epic payback prank, then look no further than this water cup trick. To pull it off, you’ll need to stick around until your unsuspecting co-worker has left for the night. Arm yourself with a large water pitcher and plenty of cups.

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Start stacking full water cups at the end of the office that’s furthest away from the door so you don’t accidentally trap yourself inside. As this is a pain-stakingingly delicate prank to set up, you may want to enlist some of your colleagues to help.

Pinkest Prank Ever

If you’ve got a co-worker who loves (or better yet, hates) pink, then gather up plenty of pink post-its and some scissors. Cut as many pink hearts out of the post-its as you can stand and prepare to strike.

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When your co-worker has left for the night, sneak forth from the shadows and stick the post-it hearts on every surface of the victim’s office you can. While this can be a deliciously cruel trick to play on a guy, it can also serve as a sweet, over-the-top, declaration of love.

Saran Wrapping Shenanigans

Got a co-worker who plans to retire? Let them know how much you hate to see them leave by literally preventing them from doing so. Recruit a team of co-workers who wish to share in your send-off hijinks and supply yourselves with plenty of saran wrap.

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Take turns wrapping your co-worker’s car as many times as you can. Then attend the victim’s good-bye party as if nothing is out of the norm. Position yourself around the window when it’s over and wait for the fun to begin.

Keyboard Chaos

If you’re looking for a simple but effective prank to pull on your cubicle mate, look no further than this keyboard trick. As it turns out, keyboard keys pop off pretty easily and can be snapped back on over other keys.

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You can either unplug and rearrange your co-worker’s keyboard while they’re out of the office or replace it with a pre-hacked keyboard. The second option is nice because you can use the altered keyboard to re-prank other co-workers or offer the victim the chance to do the same.

Most Functional Prank of All Time

Unlike most office pranks, this one is actually has practical benefits that you can enjoy long term. If you’re sick of everyone in the office stealing your lunch or drinks from the fridge, position a mini-one under your desk.

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Rather than trust your snack swapping co-workers, simply disguise the fridge to look like a shipping box. Suddenly, you’ll have the ability to pop out of your cubicle with a refreshing beverage any time. Leave your co-workers baffled as to how you pull it off for as long as the magic lasts.

Get Trashy

Need to pull off a prank on the fly? Fear not, for deviousness is no further away than the nearest roll of trash bags. The less visually appealing the bags are, the better. Once armed, ninja your way into your victim’s workspace while they’re distracted.

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Wrap every single thing you can find in its own bag, even small things like pens or staplers. When you’re done, position yourself at your desk and slap on your most unassuming face. Have a baffled look ready also for when your deeds are uncovered.

The Not-So-Tasty Toothpaste Trick

This one should be reserved only for the most good-natured of co-workers — or those who have payback coming. It can also be an excellent way to combat snack-swipers who regularly steal your food. In order to prepare, pick up a bag of Oreos and some white toothpaste.

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Simply remove the creamy filling from the Oreos, replace it with the toothpaste, and you’re ready to lay your trap. Set out the cookies in a place where you know your prey will come across them and wait for them to take the bait.

The Classic Jello Joke

In the annals of office lore, the Jello mold joke is a time-honored favorite. It takes a bit of preparation, but its effect is marvelous. First, sneak into the prankee’s cubicle and select their favorite small office supply, be it a stapler or a pen.

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Place the object in a Jello mold and proceed to make Jello around it. When the tasty snack is ready, you’ll have a big blob of see-through goodness actively holding your co-worker’s supply hostage. As they say, payback is a dish best served cold.

The Great Balloon Debacle

While this prank is truly memorable, you’re going to need some help to pull it off unless you have the lungs of an opera singer. Gather a group of conspirators after work and pass out several bags of balloons.

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Next, tell everyone to get to huffing. When the balloons are ready, begin shoving as many as possible into your victim’s office. If possible, stack enough inside that they’ll be flooded with them upon opening the door — it will make for quite the sight.

Convert Everything to Cardboard

Got a bunch of leftover boxes? Why let them go to waste when you can use them for evil? Use scissors to cut out pieces that are the size of your co-worker’s desk items. Be sure to use a permanent marker to decorate the cardboard pieces like the items they’ll be attached to.

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After that, bust out a roll of tape or sticky tack and arrange the phaux office equipment exactly as everything was before. For bonus points, steal all of your victim’s pens and leave cardboard ones behind instead.

A Must for Medical Professionals

If you work in the medical industry, then you just have to try this prank at some point. Sneak in a Halloween skeleton and dress it up like a patient. Transport it to a waiting room while taking care to shield it from actual patients who might find it alarming.

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When the time is right, rush up to the nearest doctor or nurse and explain that there’s a patient who has been waiting so long they’ve begun to complain. Position yourself in the shadows and await your reward.

World’s Worst Wake Up

Just in case you’re one of the lucky few who have never heard the sound of an airhorn, rest assured that it’s really loud. If you’re going to pull off this stunt, it’s best to pass out earplugs or at least alert everyone else in the office of your intentions.

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Position an airhorn beneath your co-worker’s chair and secure it with saran wrap or tape. Chat them up all the way to their chair so that they aren’t focused enough to notice anything wrong until it’s too late.

Stuffed Surprise

Assemble your co-conspirators and stay late at the office one night to remove the furniture from your victim’s cubicle. Replace it all with the most terrifying stuffed animal you can find and wait for it to work its magic.

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This is a simple enough prank, but it’s worth emphasizing that this should be a stuffed animal, not a real one. There’s a fine line between a good office prank and an unintended reenactment of that famous scene from Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale.

Falsify Your Friends’ Fandom

Got a co-worker who is always bragging about his or her team winning? Rest assured, that person’s day will come. Start preparing by gathering fan memorabilia that celebrates your own team. Sneak into the bragger’s office one night and deck it out in all your team’s glory.

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This one is particularly effective on the day of a big game or the day after your team has achieved victory over the braggart’s. Though it probably won’t be hard to figure out who was behind the prank, it will be well worth the look on your sports rival’s face.

Position a Plastic Peeping Tom

Each year when Halloween rolls around, terrifying plastic masks and decorations go up for sale. Be sure to pick one up so that you’ll be prepared to usher a bit of life into the next boring day at the office.

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If your office has glass windows in the doors, wait until your co-worker is hard at work and ease your prop into position. Alternatively wait until someone leaves their door open and slowly sneak the mask around the corner of the door frame when their back is turned.

Upside Down Day

There are all sorts of wacky computer codes that few people know about, which is a fact that you can use to your advantage. Using the code “Ctrl + Alt + ↓” will turn your (Windows) computer’s screen upside down. If this doesn’t work, try right-clicking, select display and then toggle the orientation settings..

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It can be a hilarious way to completely throw off any co-worker who doesn’t know how to reset their screen. After you’ve successfully enjoyed a good laugh, be sure to sneak back over and correct it using “Ctrl + Alt + ↑” for even more confusion.

Dog Days

If you want an office-wide prank, this one is guaranteed to produce a great deal of fun. Select a day when one of your co-workers has the day off and get everyone in the office in on the plan.

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Ask around to see who has a well-behaved dog, dress it up in a tiny tie or even a full outfit and place it in the chair of the employee who has the day off. Insist that everyone acknowledge it and speak to it just as they would the missing employee for a hilarious time!

Christmas-ify Your Co-Worker’s Cubicle

If you’ve got a grinch around the office, then it may be time for a little Christmas mischief. Get together a group of fellow elves and wait until a safe time presents itself. Then go into the target Scrooge’s office and gift wrap everything you can get your hands on.

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Seriously, everything. The desk, the computer keyboard, the computer itself, even the contents of entire drawers are all fair game. Alternately, gather together a bunch of boxes from the shipping department and build a full-scale gingerbread house around their cubicle.

Best to Stay Anonymous When This One’s Discovered

This one’s so cruel that it’s best to either stay anonymous or have an actual box of donuts ready to appease your mourning co-workers. Collect a couple of large boxes from the tastiest donut shop, making sure the logos are prominently displayed.

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Next, fill it full of the healthiest, most tasteless food you can think of. Anything from celery to kale is likely to do the trick. Spread the word that there are free donuts in the breakroom and lie in wait until you hear the groans and crying begin.

Happy Cat-erday!

If you’ve fallen victim to the bad attitude of someone who hates cats, then get ready to reap the ultimate vengeance. Enlist the help of cat-loving co-workers to collect all the cat-themed merchandise you can find. Purchasing a few yards of cat-themed fabric can also go a long way.

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Wait for the unsuspecting victim to take a day off or go home for the night and pounce on the hater’s office like a lion on a gazelle. Then sit back, relax and wait for the victim to flip out upon their return.

Hidden Speaker Madness

Technology has ushered in a whole new wave of pranking possibilities. For this one, you’ll need a wireless, blue-tooth enabled speaker that you can connect to your smartphone or computer. Hide the speaker deep beneath your victim’s desk drawers and retreat into the shadows.

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Spontaneously play random noises such as cat meows, baby cries, or the flapping wings of a bird over the speaker throughout the day. Make sure everyone around the prankee knows to pretend they heard nothing and watch as your prey wonders if they’re going bat crazy.

Go on a Rubber Band Rampage

Every office has multitudes of rubber bands lying around that can lead to a masterful prank. Simply sneak into your co-worker’s cubicle while they’re on break and wrap as many rubber bands as you can around their keyboard.

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This one also produces the same effect if the rubber bands are secured around a phone. If you go the phone route, be sure to place a call to the prankee right as they’ve discovered your work and watch them freak out while they try to figure out how to answer it.

Get Grassy

Want to play a trick on your favorite eco-warrior? Look no further than a few plots of grass to pull off the ultimate prank. Should you decide to use actual grass, make sure that you line the floor with a large tarp while you install it.

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You should have the tarp ready to pull out when the prank has played itself out lest you be charged for the price of new carpet. Alternately, you can always opt for fake grass if you want to be on the safe side.

Install an Attack Insect

If your kids have a terrifying insect toy, it’s easy to turn it into an office prank. All you need is a little fishing line and a small piece of sticky tack. Select a cabinet in the breakroom where there’s a large amount of traffic.

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Tie one end of the fishing line around the toy and attach the other to the inside of the cabinet door with sticky tack. Scoot the toy into the cabinet’s depths and wait for it to spring out at whoever opens the cabinet door next.

Fake Label Fun

Getting a new breakroom appliance is too good of an opportunity to pass up for some prank-fueled fun. All you need is your choice of a post-it note or an official-looking, laminated note that explains that the appliance is now voice-activated.

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As you’ve probably gleaned, this one only works well the appliance is definitely not activated by vocal commands of any kind. Spread the word about how cool the new voice-activated device is and enjoy the fun of listening to your co-workers try to figure out why it’s not working.

Mouse Madness

If you’ve fallen victim to a prank, then you must waste no time in retaliation. While a bolder form of vengeance may take time and planning, this is a quick and easy way to let an office rival know that they’ve roused your thirst for revenge.

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Take a post-it or piece of paper and tape it over the bottom of the person’s mouse sensor. Its surface can bear anything from a hand-written note to a meme print-out. Then kick back and time how long it takes them to figure out what you’ve done.

Repaint With Print-Outs

Never underestimate the perks of having a large copy machine laying around. It can help you pull off this next prank, though you may want to supply your own ink cartridge and paper to avoid getting fired.

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Select an image that you’d like to use. It can be anything from your intended victim’s face to a printout of Nicholas Cage. Use the copier to print it on hundreds of pieces of colorful paper and recruit your friends to help plaster them all over the prankee’s office.

The Drawer Discovery

A fun and easy way to prank your colleagues is the old drawer discovery trick. The fun thing about this is that you can utilize anything as a drawer filler. Common favorites are tiny candy pieces, the leftover holes from the inside of a hole puncher or confetti.

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Remove your co-worker’s drawer contents and replace them with hundreds of tiny objects of your choice. Be sure to sweep up any strays that you drop while making the switch, lest they give away the prank.

The Minecraft Makeover

If you work in an IT department, then you probably know someone who’s way too into the game Minecraft. If you want to pull an epic birthday prank, then check out this full desk Minecraft makeover. Recruit another colleague who knows enough about the game to help you make the right selections.

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Stay after hours on the night before the prankee’s birthday. Decorate so that when they come in the next morning, they find their desk decked out in their favorite theme. Bonus points if you provide Minecraft-themed cupcakes.

The Classic Post-It Prank

Of all the pranks played by office workers, the post-it prank is the most classic. Generations of cubicle dwellers have utilized post-its to redecorate entire offices from floor to ceiling in the pursuit of the perfect prank, and so can you.

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If you want to put a new spin on the old classic, lure your victim into a sense of safety by leaving their office untouched. Allow them to float through the day on a cloud of false security while routinely disappearing to tend to an important “business matter” in the company garage.