A reader writes:
I’m close with a coworker and happen to know that she’s suffering from very bad depression. I’m very proud of her for getting through it as well as she is.
Here’s my dilemma – in the last few months, she’s developed a definite problem with body odor. I think it’s likely to be related to her depression, since I know she has trouble gathering the energy to do even basic tasks. I’m concerned that it may damage her professional reputation – I know some of our coworkers have already complained about what they think is her flakiness, and the fact that she’s not been as put together as is expected in our industry (visibly rumpled clothes, that kind of thing). Should I say anything to her? And if so, what would you recommend I say? (As a side note, I don’t think this is due to cultural differences in diet or anything like that.)
I answer this question — and four others — over at Inc. today, where I’m revisiting letters that have been buried in the archives here from years ago (and sometimes updating/expanding my answers to them). You can read it here.
Other questions I’m answering there today include:
- When you didn’t meet all your goals for the year
- Old owner keeps dropping in
- Our boss keeps taking holiday gifts meant for the whole office
- If I get an offer, can I ask if I was the first choice?