Skip to main content
Search
Services
WORLD BUSINESS

Bad smells a source for office stress

story.office.jpg
Noise from talkative co-workers also proved to be a thorny issue.

GLOBAL OFFICE

Are you hungry for information? Click here for stories

ON CNNI TV

Click here for Global Office show times on CNN International.

YOUR SAY

E-mail us: Global Office wants to hear from you. E-mail your questions and suggestions and we will read the best on air.

QUICKVOTE

Have you ever struck a deal at a sporting event?
Yes
No
or View Results

YOUR E-MAIL ALERTS

Global Office
Great Britain
Computer Peripherals

LONDON, England -- Smelly offices are making working life unpleasant and sending stress levels soaring for many people in Britain, according to new research.

As temperatures rise in the Northern Hemisphere summer, overheated and stuffy offices are increasingly irritating employees.

Respondents objected to co-worker body and foot odour, especially people who remove their shoes at work and others who sweat from cycling into the office.

The survey by UK employment agency, Connections, included the views of 500 British workers on what irritates them in the office -- 34 percent cited their physical environment.

"With temperatures rising, it is more important than ever that employers ensure a clean, healthy office environment," said Michelle Kingsley from Connections.

"A stifling office makes for irritated employees and severely affects output."

Soaring temperatures are not the only problem, 23 percent said that dysfunctional equipment, such as slow computers, faulty printers and temperamental e-mail systems sent their stress levels rising -- especially when preparing important documents.

Toilets were another cause for complaint, with 13 percent condemning them as smelly and dirty, while six percent were shocked that their co-workers neglected to wash their hands after using the bathroom.

Lunchtime habits also upset some office workers, nine percent objected to smelly lunches, especially egg or tuna sandwiches brought in by co-workers.

Noise from talkative co-workers also proved to be a thorny issue for eight percent of those interviewed. They described background chatting and joking as an unwanted distraction, especially when a deadline was imminent.

Other office problems did not escape the survey -- filing fingernails, leaving the milk out, cutting hair at the desk, not reclaiming festering food from the fridge, leaving dirty mugs on desks and stealing other people's pens were also cited as annoying habits in the workplace.

Story Tools
Subscribe to Time for $1.99 cover
Top Stories
Get up-to-the minute news from CNN
CNN.com gives you the latest stories and video from the around the world, with in-depth coverage of U.S. news, politics, entertainment, health, crime, tech and more.
Top Stories
Get up-to-the minute news from CNN
CNN.com gives you the latest stories and video from the around the world, with in-depth coverage of U.S. news, politics, entertainment, health, crime, tech and more.
Search
© 2007 Cable News Network.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us. Site Map.
Offsite Icon External sites open in new window; not endorsed by CNN.com
Pipeline Icon Pay service with live and archived video. Learn more
Radio News Icon Download audio news  |  RSS Feed Add RSS headlines