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I have a co-worker at work who I have figured has given me the wrong advice or wrong impression more than once (like "oh its ok to come by this time" while I found out later it was not permitted by company policy).

What do you call such a person?

EDIT: Thanks to everyone for the answers. I was looking for someone doing this deliberately.In my opinion the word I would use would be a "deceiver" or a "misleader", as they convey the sense of deliberately giving a false impression or leading in the wrong direction.

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May I charitably suggest calling them infrequently? :) –  tchrist Jan 23 at 1:05
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"Misleading" is common, "misleader" appears rare. –  Elliott Frisch Jan 23 at 5:46
    
@ElliottFrisch Your right. Misleader is not a word I hear often. Thanks! –  umair Jan 23 at 5:49
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5 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

There are several possible answers;

If this behavior is intentional - they may be a "saboteur" (one who sabotages), they may be "deceitful" (deceiving or misleading others), "suborning" (inducing (someone) to commit an unlawful act) or "malicious" (intending or intended to do harm).

If it is unintentional - then they are "mistaken" (wrong in one's opinion or judgment), "incorrect" (not in accordance with fact; wrong) or possibly "out-of-date" (no longer useful or acceptable) or even "out of touch" (not keeping informed of the developments relating to someone or something).

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If on purpose -

  • deceiver

informally

  • Weasel

  • Snake-in-the-grass

if not on purpose

  • Unreliable

informally

  • flake
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The first three are all slang. Whilst the question didn't exclude slang from the answer, I would suggest that a good answer should make it clear if it is making informal/slang suggestions. I also disagree about double-crossing. I don't think that you're double-crossing someone if you give them bad advice, even if intentionally. Double-crossing implies that there was a "single-crossing" to begin with, like the person being given the advice thought that their colleague was deceiving management when in fact they were deceiving them. –  starsplusplus Jan 22 at 11:35
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updated......... –  mplungjan Jan 22 at 12:14
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+1 for unreliable –  bib Jan 22 at 13:37
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Indeed, unreliable was the first word to come to my mind. Works for deliberate or unintentional both. –  Bradd Szonye Jan 23 at 5:49
    
@mplungjan your right. I've chosen deceiver to be the appropriate word. Unfortunately I cant get the accepted answer checkbox ticked as I already accepted another answer before this. –  umair Jan 23 at 5:50
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It depends how strong you want to be- for example if you are calling them out, you might say they are a liar, but that is quite strong.

On the whole you would probably want to be careful about calling someone something, when perhaps what you intend to do is describe them.

So aside from "liar" you don't have many names you would call someone, but you might describe them instead "he is deceitful", "she is untrustworthy," "he is unreliable," "I would not count on her advice."

If you wanted to cushion it slightly in the situation you described you might say "he was a bit confused about when I should drop by" - this suggests that they didn't realise they gave you bad advice, but also implies that they don't really know how to do their job so it still has an edge to it.

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+1 for untrustworthy –  bib Jan 22 at 13:37
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My American dialect has no single word or phrase for that, someone who unintentionally misinforms you.

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your ill-wisher or your worst friend or competition! Well, Iago is the best answer.(That's Othello, Shakespeare and he does exactly that to his supposed best friend Othello)

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This might not be too clear to someone who hasn't read or seen Othello! :) –  Ronan Mar 24 at 9:45
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