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Smoking at work
16-09-2005, 12:46 PM
Post: #1
Smoking at work

These days I imagine that smoking is banned in all offices or perhaps a smoking room is available to those who smoke.

At my work there's a no smoking policy. We only had one smoker who only ever has one a day, at lunch time, in a local cafe that allows smoking.

Recently though, we've got a new boss who generally goes outside to smoke but probably has at least one a day (maybe more, I don't work alongside her) in the office.

The other day I walked in the room when she was smoking and she said 'I know I'm not supposed to smoke in here', as if the fact that she knows the rules somehow makes it ok.

As she's the boss, it makes it difficult to bring it up (plus I'm a coward). Of course I could report her to her boss but I could just imagine her saying something in a staff meeting about someone reporting her and of course I'd be blushing furiously. Plus I'm not sure it'd be fair on her if I haven't broached it with her first.

How would anyone else handle it?
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16-09-2005, 12:54 PM
Post: #2
Smoking at work
Well Max, as a smoker, I would be furious if my boss was "breaking the rules" and smoking in her office when I had to go outside for one - I stop smoking in the day during winter - Im b%ggered if I am gonna freeze my ass off for the sake of a fag!!!

I would also find it very offensive if I was a non smoker if someone was ignoring the company policies - have you got a Company Handbook/Procedures Manual that you can refer to? Perhaps broach the subject with her? Failing that, I would say its a personnel issue and that you should be able to report it in confidence with no fear of retribution (well you would if I was your personnel manager!!!!)

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16-09-2005, 01:00 PM
Post: #3
Smoking at work
It depends if it bothers you personally, Max. If you don't care one way or another, let someone else report her. If it does bother you, then you should report her. I can understand how this would be awkward, though. Maybe you could approach her gently from a friendly perspective. Or, as I would, report her anonymously. :w00t:
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16-09-2005, 05:10 PM
Post: #4
Smoking at work
What a toughie Maxamillion - i just don't know how to go about handling this?? As a smoker that has to whip outside for a ciggie - and I do this willingly, I couldn't stand to smoke indoors and stink of smoke all day in the office.

But as a non-smoker I would be incandescent with rage if she did it near me [if I were a non-smoker] - she doesn't seem to be making any attempt to hide it by hanging out the window or anything?? [well ou don't say that].

I really don't know how I would approach this - actually as a smoker I would probably say to her, 'come on do you fancy a ciggie, and then when I am outsdie with her I would say isn't it lovely to get OUT of the office even for a few mins, to get some fresh air, and although I am freezing my butt off out here - at least my clothes don't stink of smoke as they would if we smoked in the office!!'

That way we would be doing 'it' together, smokers unite.

But Max as a non smoker it is a little difficult to address this without the extra 'smoking' bond??

I always cook with wine, and sometimes I actually put it in the food.
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16-09-2005, 05:26 PM
Post: #5
Smoking at work
I s'pose, if I'm completely honest, it wouldn't bother me too much if I actually liked the woman! Although, as the boss in an almost completely non smoking office I think she's taking a f****** liberty (said in Catherine Tate stylee). I won't be reporting her, I will just whinge and moan behind her back, making sure I avoid her hench women when doing so.
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16-09-2005, 05:31 PM
Post: #6
Smoking at work
Oh Max I really do sympathise with you - I had a sort of similar problem but he was not my boss where yours is.

I know you have mentioned that she is just new to the job and that you didn't really like her. How many of you work in the office? Max, I would try to say something now rather than later. If she starts doing this, she will only continue and it will make you feel uncomfortable. I know also that if you say anything to her it could make you feel just as uncomfortable but it would be better just having a quiet word saying that it is against company policy rather than going behind her back. I really feel for you Max, really I do. Good luck! :hug: She is taking liberties and this could just be the start.

We had no-smoking at work and there were 2 nights you had to work late and one night I was working with this guy. I went to make us a cup of tea and I come to find him with an ashtray and one of those small cigar type things. He said to me I know you wouldn't mind. I was gobsmacked, it really stank to the high heavens and I felt that he had abused my friendship, we got on quite well. I just said to him that I did mind and that would he mind if he didn't. Luckily he did although he gave me a bit of hard time about it, saying that he thought he thought we were mates and blah, blah, blah.

We used to allow customers to smoke when they came to for a loan-close and then we decided that it was:

1. Unfair on the staff who were in the room

2. Unfair on any customers who were going into the room afterwards as it was usually very smelly.

It all went well until one day my boss was closing a loan and he allowed the customers to smoke in the room, it was a long loan-close and I think the couple got through about 40 fags. My next customers were due in 10 minutes after they left but the room was just a disgrace. I had to open up all the windows, spray air freshner but it just didn't get rid of the smell. I did approach my boss about and he said to me that it was important to put the customer's at ease so he let them smoke, I questioned him about my customers or any other customers coming in to a smoky room and what impression it would have? He wasn't a nice guy and a bit of a bully and basically stared me out telling me that he got the deal and that was all that mattered.

The thing was it ended up the couple he had in, the couple he put at ease and the loan that he thought was in the bag had to be turned down as they were crooks! I got my loan signed, sealed and delivered though!

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17-09-2005, 10:39 PM
Post: #7
Smoking at work
I think time will sort this one out! I doubt she can get away with it for any amount of a smoker I would be annoyed that I had to go outside while she smoked in her office...if I were a non smoker I would be annoyed that she was breaking the rules, and surely smoke escapes from her office (could annoy those who are concerned with passive smoking)

Either way she is breaking the rules, so I would try to enlist a smoker to get on her side so to speak, and explain to her that this behaviour will only kindle bad feeling on all fact I would say something anyway as, at the fine end, there are safety issues involved too, probably insurance problems too, if the worst happened.


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17-09-2005, 11:22 PM
Post: #8
Smoking at work
My advice would be to do and say absolute nothing, pretend it never happened.

These things take care of themselves over time, and her attitude will end up with her paying the price herself.

Get involved and you create conflict, and conflict very, very rarely has a habit of ending up in your favour. Look after No. 1, thats you.
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18-09-2005, 08:31 AM
Post: #9
Smoking at work
Just tell her superior and let them tell her. If she is flouting simple rules like that what else is she going to to to the business?

A boss is a work related superior not a social superior, feel no fear and make yourself happy.

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19-09-2005, 03:21 PM
Post: #10
Smoking at work
Trouble is Isle, that relies on management being good!

Good management would protect the employee by ensuring that if the matter is taken up with her manager, there is no possibility of that employee being subsequently identified and victimised.

If there is only one witness, and her manager's superior comes down on her for smoking, thats where the problems start for "snitching" as the manager knows where to vent her revenge.

A good manager would, for example, not address the issue directly with the manager who was smoking, but broach the subject to her along the lines of "it has come to my attention that some employees have been breaking the no smoking rules. Please issue a communication that any further infringements of this rule will be severely punished, and if you become aware of any infringements, please bring it to my attention immediately". ie put them in charge of enforcement. No friction, no personal reproachments, no feelings hurt (only a suspicion of "was it me") and hopefully problem solved.

A bad manager does it all wrong, ending up with bad feelings, recriminations, and friction. And thats my experience of management! Don't trust them!
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