Is That Food Stuck in Your Teeth?

September 24, 2009 ( - Spotting a male co-worker with his fly at half-mast can prove one of the most awkward workplace situations people face.

While it may be embarrassing, a new CareerBuilder survey found 67% would mention a co-worker’s zipper being undone, 62% would do it for a direct report, and half would point out the problem to a higher-up.

Then there are office mates whose breath would kill weeds.

If the offender were a co-worker, 33% would suggest a quick breath mint, 29% would do so with a lower-level person, and a mere 14% would risk disclosing the bad breath to a higher-up.

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive on behalf of among 4,478 U.S. workers (employed full-time, not self-employed, nongovernment) ages 18 and over between May 22 and June 10, 2009.

You have something in your nose

a. Same level co-worker - 51%
b. Lower level co-worker - 46%
c. Higher level co-worker - 33%

You have food in your teeth or on your face

a. Same level co-worker - 66%
b. Lower level co-worker - 60%
c. Higher level co-worker - 49%

Your hair is messy

a. Same level co-worker - 33%
b. Lower level co-worker - 30%
c. Higher level co-worker - 13%

You have a stain on your clothes

a. Same level co-worker - 51%
b. Lower level co-worker - 47%
c. Higher level co-worker - 34%

You need a shower

a. Same level co-worker - 28%
b. Lower level co-worker - 28%
c. Higher level co-worker - 11%

Your apparel is not appropriate for the office

a. Same level co-worker - 32%
b. Lower level co-worker - 37%
c. Higher level co-worker -10%