Warning Employee for Bad Smell

Issues related to personal hygiene are very difficult to handle at the workplace. Employers find it challenging to write to the employee telling him to maintain personal hygiene. Telling someone that they smell and give an unpleasant experience to someone is not something bad. It is a type of constructive feedback that is communicated in the right way. You should tell the employee in person about maintaining hygiene. For this purpose, writing a warning letter is the most appropriate thing to do.

Tips for writing the warning letter to an employee who smells bad:

Below are some tips that you must follow to write this letter:

  • Don’t sound judgemental:

It is important to remember that when you tell your employee that he smells, you should not sound judgemental. For this purpose, you can tell the employee that it is ok to have a bad body odor as it is a natural and a common problem. This way, you will be able to save employees from utter embarrassment.

  • Emphasize the importance of cleanliness:

Tell the employee that maintaining hygiene and cleanliness is extremely important and one of the most important codes of conduct. So, it is not acceptable for an employee to come to the office without taking shower or wearing neat clothes.

  • Show how it affects the company:

Explain to the employee that how he is putting the name of the company to shame.

  • Use appropriate words:

Your letter should convey the warning with an appropriate selection of words.

  • Give reason for writing the warning letter:

Write what compelled you to write this warning letter. If the employee has been given so many verbal warnings before, bring them up in the letter.

  • Ask him to arrange a meeting:

It is not mandatory but you can ask the employee to meet you in person and discuss the reasons behind not paying any heed to warnings of the company.

Importance of writing the warning letter for bad smell:

Many people think that it is not important to take notice of the bad smell coming from the employee. They just pay attention to the performance of the letter. Cleanliness is not just for those who work in a company. It is required to be adopted by every individual. Some people maintain hygiene and therefore, they are told to do that. Some employees also don’t take much care of personal hygiene because it is not on their priority list. When they receive a warning letter, they take this matter seriously.

In the warning letter, you criticize the employee just to make him correct himself. It is a type of feedback that lets the employee know about his mistake. This letter also lets the employee know that his behavior has been noticed by the employer and now he should try to change his behavior if he wants to get away from the stricter disciplinary action such as termination.

Sample letter:


Name of the employee
Address of the address of the employee

Subject: Warning for bad smell or poor personal hygiene

Dear Mr. Johansson,

You have been told many times that it is against the policy of the company to come to the office with poor hygiene. However, you don’t seem to understand it. Please consider this letter as a formal warning letter from the company for not maintaining hygiene. It has been reiterated so many times that cleanliness is the top priority of the company and no employee should come to the office with a foul and pungent smell. 

A lot of your co-workers have told me that you smell bad. You, being the sales representative represent the entire organization. However, the bad smell coming from you puts a bad impression and causes inconvenience for others. Therefore, the company expects you to get rid of this smell come rain or shine. This warning letter will be attached to your file and will be removed when you stop giving a bad smell.

If you don’t pay attention to this warning also, the company will have to contact the HR office for starting the procedure of your dismissal.  I hope that you try to adopt cleanliness in your personal and professional life.


The sender of the letter


File: Word (.docx) 2007+ and iPad
Size 21 Kb