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How can I tactfully tell my assistant that he, well, smells?

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1gobluedem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 09:04 AM
Original message
How can I tactfully tell my assistant that he, well, smells?
My assistant often comes into the office smelling unwashed. He drops his daughter off at work in the morning and he often will take his dog for a run when he gets up; both make him skip a morning shower. He doesn't reek of BO, he just smells kind of stale and the smell has also permated his office. This is an old building and the ventilation isn't great and being near him is no treat on those days.

I'm sure he has no idea this is a problem. He's a nice guy and I don't want to embarrass him but others have remarked upon it to me too and I feel as though I need to say something.

Anyone ever had to do this before?
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DS1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 09:09 AM
Response to Original message
1. Write a review letter
1gobluedem reviews: Your stink


It wasn't long ago when I was hosing my garden, after washing the car where I'd been deflowered during a night of soft tacos and unbridled passion, when I was thinking about the ungodly fumes emanating from your pits.

Finish that, mail it, and you're all set.
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bicentennial_baby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #1
7. ...
:rofl:
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Blue-Jay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 11:50 AM
Response to Reply #1
24. Win!
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Orsino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:02 AM
Response to Original message
2. You could offer to adjust his schedule...
...so as to give him more time for personal hygiene. It might be painful for him to hear, but you'd be sweetening the situation with an offer of compromise. You'd be one of those understanding bosses that employees love.
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JMackT Donating Member (95 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:05 AM
Response to Original message
3. Just tell him
dont beat around the bush
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Phillycat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:06 AM
Response to Original message
4. Anonymous deoderant in the middle of his desk.
He won't have to deal with a confrontation and neither will you, but he'll get the message. :shrug:
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callous taoboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:19 AM
Response to Original message
5. O.K.
I had the same thing happen at work with a stinky colleague. He's a nice guy but extremely geeky, with that plaquey smile and high waters and dandruff- the whole bit, including, on certain days, an overpowering B.O. One particular day it permeated the entire wing we work on. Everybody on the wing kept looking at each other after work like, "What the hell is that?" I think he must've known that it was particularly bad that day because it has not been a problem since. He still smells pretty stale, as does his classroom.

Diet plays such a role in what kind of odor your body produces.

I would definitely say something to him. Since he is your assistant are you his immediate supervisor?
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skooooo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:46 AM
Response to Reply #5
12. Diet and BO...

Reminds me of a couple of people I knew that lived on fast food to the point where it smelled like the grease had permeated their skin pores.
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callous taoboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:52 AM
Response to Reply #12
15. This colleague also lives on fast food and hot cheetos.
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guitar man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:25 AM
Response to Original message
6. get him a copy of this album :D
Edited on Wed Jul-23-08 10:25 AM by GTRMAN
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callous taoboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:32 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. LOL is that album for real. HA!
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guitar man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:42 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. absolutely real
I have it in my collection...it is hilarious!! :D
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callous taoboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:43 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. Is it naaaasty like his Vegas act supposedly was?
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guitar man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:51 AM
Response to Reply #11
14. oh yeah
it's pretty raunchy....that's what he did when he wasn't Fred Sanford...
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Gormy Cuss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:34 AM
Response to Original message
9. You smell. He stinks.
Unless you own the business, take the problem to HR. It's their job to handle it in a tactful way in order to avoid lawsuits.
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LeftyFingerPop Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:46 AM
Response to Original message
13. Gently say "Jesus Christ, you fucking stink worse than a wet goat"
This should work.
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raccoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 12:04 PM
Response to Reply #13
26. Saying "my pet goat when he's wet" will soften the blow a little. nt
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Rambis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:52 AM
Response to Original message
16. Feel the pain
in the nose- We had a french girl who would wear the same sweater every day of the week. She rarely showered and it had to be addressed in a review. I used to work out in a gym with a very nice foreign gentleman but he ate so much garlic that you had to use a machine two down from him or your eyes would literally water. Lovely person, very nice but it was a problem because if he did not wash down the machine with the bottle provided you could not use them. In the end it has to be taken care of by meeting with the person. Difficult to do but it has to be done.
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behave Donating Member (228 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:53 AM
Response to Original message
17. Move his desk and things outside
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Mutley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:57 AM
Response to Original message
18. At my company we had to sign a paper about cleanliness
and personal hygiene. Does yours have something similar?
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OmahaBlueDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:59 AM
Response to Original message
19. Take him / her aside
"Dude, I don't want to be rotten, and there's no nice way to say this. You smell. I'd love to tell you it's just me, but some of the co-workers have noticed as well"
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ghostsofgiants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 11:24 AM
Response to Original message
20. Put a copy of this song on his desk maybe...
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Chan790 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
21. Generally, what do you do?
Could you perhaps lie and tell him a customer complained he smelt bad.

I had a barista I ended up having to do that to. He was totally-opposed to bathing because it washed away his "great pheromones". He smelt like a goat.
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1gobluedem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 11:33 AM
Response to Reply #21
22. I work at a radio station
So I can't give him the customer line unless I say it's so bad that listeners can smell it coming out of their radios. And it's not THAT bad.
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crispini Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 11:59 AM
Response to Reply #21
25. LOL
Thanks for the chuckle.
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Breeze54 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 11:49 AM
Response to Original message
23. Pull him aside and in a friendly but concerned tone...
tell him you admire that he exercises before work but "You need to shower afterwards, dude!"

Most people do not know they have an odor about them. Apologize for being 'so bold' but let him know.

He's probably not aware of it. Get him some laundry detergent too! :P

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