Author Topic: Car Salesman & Bad Breath  (Read 2355 times)

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Raina

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Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« on: February 22, 2013, 06:35:05 PM »
DH and I were car shopping today and ended up test driving a car with DH driving, me in the front passenger seat, and Car Salesman (CS) in the backseat.  His breath was so horrible that it was giving me a headache and making me nauseous.  I had the air turned up, circulating outside air, and every time he would open his mouth, the stench would make me almost gag.  DH is super laid back about everything and even he was saying he kept smelling this horrible smell and it took him a bit to connect the source of it but boy was it foul.

CS was basically pretty nice, not super pushy as salesmen can be, and we found him to be less offensive than other salesmen we saw today, other than the breath, but because we will likely be returning to this dealership to continue checking out the cars, is there a polite way to request someone else? Hopefully he won't be there next time we come, won't recognize us, but as DH and I sort of stand out as a couple (we are different ethnicities in a very conservative town), I'm not holding out much hope he won't recognize us when we come back.

Would it be better for one of us to go alone to scope out a different salesman, and then come together and request the new name? But then if the new person isn't there, and CS is, we're in the same dilemma: how can we politely request someone else?

johelenc1

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2013, 09:05:46 PM »
Personally, I would call the dealership and just give them a FYI.  I'm sure the poor guy would be mortified to find out his breathe was that bad, but then grateful to be able to do something about it so he doesn't lose future sales.

doodlemor

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2013, 09:25:27 PM »
Personally, I would call the dealership and just give them a FYI.  I'm sure the poor guy would be mortified to find out his breathe was that bad, but then grateful to be able to do something about it so he doesn't lose future sales.

POD.  This could be a health issue, too.  It needs to be addressed.

oceanus

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2013, 09:45:18 PM »
Yeah, as bad as you describe it, he might have a bad tooth/teeth or something else.  Certainly wasn't just a carryover from lunch.

An uncle who used to work in appliance sales said he always carried breath spray, mints and a small travel size deodorant just in case.

siamesecat2965

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2013, 04:11:43 PM »
I agree its something more than eating something smelly for lunch. My dad had a "bad" tooth, and some sort of pocket around it that would get infected quite often. I'm not lying that no matter what he did, because of this, his breath smelled like something that had been rotting and decomposing outside in the summer. No amount of mints, gum, brush, mouthwash would help.  I think he finally had the tooth removed, and voila, his breath improved.

While it is embarassing, I think you'd be doing a kind thing to let the dealership know, as the salesman might not be aware of just how bad it is.

Aquamarine

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2013, 09:31:55 AM »
This is something that must be brought to the manager's attention, how they choose to deal with it is up to them.  This salesperson is not only costing himself sales, he is also costing the dealership lost sales and clients.  This is just not something I would be willing to tolerate and probably many others feel the same way.  Customers don't have to stay in this person's company like they would if was their boss, they just vote with their feet by going elsewhere.

Whenever you are in a position to deal closely with the public it is absolutely imperative that you are in tip top shape with your dress and personal grooming.  A salesman always needs to put their best foot forward and this person with his bad breath is failing to do that in a spectacular fashion.  Yes, it may be awkward and embarrassing to talk about but it would be doing this young man a tremendous kindness in speaking about it to his face rather than behind his back like I imagine most of the staff is already doing.  Things of this nature rarely go untalked about in the workplace.

This young man's ignorance of his problem is costing him a great deal right in his wallet.
Always be polite, even to nasty people. Not because they are nice, but because you are.

JenJay

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2013, 09:44:16 AM »
I agree with everyone else. I'd call anonymously and give them a heads-up. As horrible as it would be to have the boss say "So here's the thing..." it'd be worse to find out later that it had been an issue for weeks or months and nobody told me. Poor guy.  :-\

Virg

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2013, 09:49:51 AM »
If you liked him other than his bad breath, and his breath is a showstopper, you'd be doing him a big favor to let him (or his manager) know about it.  Something like this will affect his livelihood and so telling him allows him to fix the problem.  JenJay has the best idea, but failing that I'd be willing to say, "I'm sorry to have to say this, but you breath was very off-putting during the test drive."

Virg

DaDancingPsych

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2013, 11:50:53 AM »
I do agree that it would be helpful to call the dealership and let them know about the problem, but I am not convinced that etiquette requires such a thing. It would just be very kind and helpful for the salesperson and the dealership.

You are under no obligation to continue with this salesperson. I would call the dealership and let them know that you would like to make an appointment with a different person (if you are unwilling to give him another shot.) You can decide whether you want to provide your reasoning or not. Then when you return, you can simply work with the new person. If you run into the first salesperson, I would say my hellos, but he is unlikely to demand to know why you didnít come back to him. In fact, he will likely avoid you.

oceanus

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2013, 12:10:43 PM »
I would think his manager and fellow salespeople and co-workers would have noticed his terrible breath.  Strange that someone hasn't said aomething.  Or, maybe they have and he just hasn't done anything about the problem.

Another thing about going to another salesperson (which is fineif you're uncomfortable with him):  I don't know their policy but I remember once when I spent some time with a car salesman (including test drive).  I left, thought about it, shopped around and returned a week or so later.  A different sales person approached me, and there was an uncomfortable scene (I assume because of commissions).  Different situation, I know, but just saying.

amylouky

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2013, 12:50:32 PM »
Honestly.. I'd give him another chance. There are many reasons he could have had horrible breath that could be very temporary. My DS gets ear/sinus infections that make his breath smell like rotting meat for a day or two, til the antibiotics kick in. Thankfully he only gets them once or twice a year. I've also had a parasite that made my breath smell like sulfur.. that was NOT pleasant.

I wouldn't get in another car with him where you're trapped with the foul breath.. that sounds awful. But maybe you could stop in to ask him a question, and see if it's still an issue?

I just think it's a shame for someone who  you admit did a good job, better than other salesmen, to lose a sale because of something like this. Not that you don't have a right to be bothered.. that is really gross, but it could have been a temporary thing or something he was completely unaware of.

BeagleMommy

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2013, 02:59:53 PM »
You are within your rights, no matter what the reason, to request another salesman.  If it were me, I would try to call the dealership to let his supervisor know that he did a great job, but his breath was very bad and that it was making you uncomfortable.

In a job like his, impression is everything.  If people are put off by some aspect of you, it should be made known so it can be corrected.

gramma dishes

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Re: Car Salesman & Bad Breath
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2013, 04:11:27 PM »
Did you offer him a mint or some gum or a Listerine breath strip?  Sometimes that's enough of a hint that they'll 'get it' without your actually having to tell him he has Dragon Breath.

I suspect this was a momentary thing because I can't believe his coworkers (and whoever hired him in the first place) would not have noticed and said something to him otherwise.  Remember that they're smart enough to realize that heinous breath not only means HE doesn't make a sale, it means the whole dealership doesn't make a sale!