Now I’m a great one for battling through, for making the most of a bad situation, getting stiff… around the upper lip area.
I am, of course, referring to the issue of when to take a sickie and when to come in to work.
Let me give you the story.
Ryanair… that incubus of nasty germs, usually called ‘the Cabin Crew’ but on this occasion I am actually talking about a communicable disease.
I’d tried my usual trick of sitting in the aisle seat when there was someone already sitting by the window, in the hope that no-one would be brave enough to ask me to move. As time went on, though, it became obvious that the flight was full and, indeed the inevitable happened.
Of course I duly stood up to let the person in and it was then that I noticed that he was sweating profusely. I tried not to notice, but then he started coughing, incessantly. And then he started wiping the handkerchief he had just coughed into around his sweaty neck.
What did this guy have?
And why the bloody hell had he got onto a ‘plane with 180 other people?
And why the double bloody hell did he have to sit next to me?
The thing is we place great store on our reliable employees who struggle in when they are feeling R.A.G. (That’s Rough As Guts). But should we?
Sure, they are trying to do the right thing, but what if they infect their colleagues whose work ethic might be quite as strong? It could be a disaster for the business, particularly an EB business with a small workforce.
The answer, of course, is balance. You don’t want your staff going off sick at the first sign of a sniffle, but at the same time, you don’t want them feeling as though they have to come into work at all costs.
The vehicles of sick pay and Statutory Sick Pay are there so that employees who are legitimately sick can take the time off they need to recover. However, here’s a little tip for you. When someone is feeling a bit rough, make sure they have to call you, on your mobile, before eight to let you know they are going to be off… not text, not email… call you.
As for me, thanks very much for asking, I do feel a bit feverish after my brush with the Andromeda Strain this morning, but I expect I’ll be okay to go to work tomorrow!