Who stinks at the office?


source: Google Image

Bad breath, unpleasant smell, stench are enemies of every person. Everyone decide about own habits, but if you work with such people, your life could be nightmare in the cloud of smell. It is easy to warn your roommate to wash teeth or change clothes, but if you are in this situation, would you choose to be open and honest or to suffer in silence because you don’t want to hurt him?

This happened in one of offices at Ministry of defense in Croatia. Darko got new office mate, old woman Barbara, 55 years old. She never worked in civil service and she needs money until her retirement. At first, Darko was fascinated because she was busy bee, ready to solve every file and to clean closet from old documents. She helped him with clients, because he was really busy. After a month Darko noticed bad smell in his office, and his colleagues smiled every time when he was with them at lunch pause.

Why you smile?

Darko, did you wash your laundry? Or you forgot to wash teeth or hair? Something stinks buddy.

Darko realized that his colleague Barbara left track of bad smell in his office. Then he remembered how Barbara talked about her big farm with horses and cows. She was proud on her animals at village farm, because she cared for them after work, despite she was tired. They were her pets, as she used to talk. Darko felt very unpleasant, and other people started to tease him that he will die from smell soon if he will not do something. He tried to talk about this on kind way, as in generally “i really love to be clean, and my favorite perfume is Axe” but Barbara did not get the point. Darko opened windows but what will be during winter, when all will be closed? Still he is thinking how to ask boss of department to move in another room.

Not all employees are lucky as Barbara. She may do what she wants without worry for other opinions, but in private firms situations are different.

For example, this boss in Serbian firm Telegroup had official order for his employees, to wash themselves because, as he said “i don’t want to puke or faint every time when i talk with somebody.”

Some people will say, why to be rude with others and why to hurt their feelings.

By the same Author: Beggaring is not as it looks like


source: Google Image

Few questions:


  1. Isn’t it rude to make unpleasant conditions for others, if you smell bad?

  2. You are minority if you refuse to do something to solve this problem, so do you have right to abuse others?

  3. What would you do if someone else do the same thing to you?

Source of bad smell can also be kind of sickness, bad breath or alcohol, but whatever is it, you are the one who must solve this problem, not others.

If such people were firing, do they have right to complain? We can also sue for impossible conditions at work, so that story would be endless.

Guest Post by Kristina Gallo

Kristina-Gallo 200x200


I am writing short stories about human psychology. My view is ironic and objective, and examples are from real life. During life, i was always suffering in relations caused by my wrong choices. I want to forward what i learned.

The copyrights on the article belong to the author. The responsibility for the opinions expressed in the article belongs exclusively to the author.

If you want to be Guest Writer for look around! check this “Guests of Honor Page“.

17 thoughts on “Who stinks at the office?

  1. Pingback: Today on look around! | look around!

  2. Pingback: September Guest Posts Statistics | look around!

  3. Interesting post, and one I can relate to regarding other people. First example: As a supervisor in a food factory I was responsible for all that involved the hygiene of the food process its self, and to some degree the staff as well. With regard to the latter, it did involve the personal hygiene of individuals, and their health. (It was surprising how many workers with infectious ailments came into work, from skin disorders to colds, and especially flue. As a rule all of the latter was, in most cases discernible, and after making the company nurse aware that I was going to refer a person to go see her, my job was done, and in most cases the person was sent home.
    On the personal hygiene of staff,* well that was a little more difficult to deal with, I was more dependant on the workers to report such cases, and not directly to me, to the line foreman, or directly to the nurse where it was dolt with on a friendly bases. However on one occasion I did become involved, not with the individual who was the cause of the complaint, but a very nasty person who thought the best way to deal with the situation was to give a present, in a box, and wrapped, and yes, it was a bar of soap, with a very nasty note attached, just 2 words, “You smell”. Appropriate disciplinary measures were taken against the nasty person and the smelly one was, with some decorum, dealt with by the nurse. This account of the latter is just the gist of what went on, for it was far more complicated indeed.

    The next incident involved a very, very close friend of mine, of whom other friends were telling me smelly funny on occasions. Well I certainly wasn’t aware of any smells with direct regard to this person, but ferrets did come into the equation. A word in my friends ear and the problem solved, the washing machine did a great job.

    I cant imagine how this situation would play out in an office environment, re the present of soap, doesn’t bare thinking about…..

    My two pennies worth, hope you find it as interesting as I found your $1,000,000 post! take care,

    ☮ Mick ☮

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Who stinks at the office? – My Garden Biodiversity

  5. Several years ago, our electronics engineer, who is otherwise extremely smart and skillful, stunk to high heaven every day. Wherever he went, so did the sharp, oniony stench. Finally, we staffers played spin the deoderant can to find out who will tell him of our unhappiness with his lack of hygiene. No, it wasn’t me.

    The coworker shaped up after being told once.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. There are some medical conditions that cause people to have an odor that they cannot control by any amount of washing, laundering, mouthwash or breath mints. Other handicaps are tolerated, and in some instances, even celebrated, but for those who have an uncontrollable smell about them…there is nothing but ridicule and intolerance.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I think with sensitivity it’s possible and kind to raise these topics. I recommend doing self-empathy first so that you’re really clear about what your own motivations are. Then, building trust with the person to have a gentle conversation. There are very talented minds who sometimes don’t place much store on things like deodorant. I want to benefit from their ideas – and also enjoy our workplace. Nonviolent Communication makes difficult conversations like this easier and more trust-building. Dian Killian has a podcast – Work Collaboratively – which gives some tips I’ve enjoyed.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s