If You Are Sick, Stay Home From Work

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If you’ve been in the workforce before, and most of you have at some point, you know there is always a coworker that loves the office so much that he or she doesn’t miss a day, even when they are sick. This coworker will come to the office with their box of Kleenex, Lysol, cold aids and such, trying to make it through the day coughing and sneezing and spreading their germs and destruction everywhere.

But as a Cubicle Chick, HR Guru, and corporate manager, I must go on record by stating that if you are sick YOU SHOULD STAY AT HOME.

Coming into the office while sick not only causes problems for the person who is sick, it can cause others in the organization to get sick too. Especially in the times of serious illnesses such as H1N1. Once you are exposed to such germs, there is a domino effect and the whole office and their families are at risk.

I understand devotion to your job, the fact that you may not have vacation or sick time available and that you need every penny on your paycheck in order to make ends meet.  But you must think of the betterment of the office. And if you are dealing with clients and customers and other people from the public, you have to think of others first. Plus, it would do you some good to stay at home and treat your cold or flu before it gets any worse.

I can assure you, the work will be there when you get back!

To those bosses who use scare tactics to make people feel that they must come in even when they are ill, you need to be held accountable as well. I worked in an environment such as that before where people were scared to take off even though they had the time available to do so because Atilla the Hun would threaten you with your job. There is no place for that when it comes to someone’s health and the health of others in the office.

Be smart about your health and your job. Follow the guidelines of the company set forth and call in sick. Taking care of yourself is the best gift you can give to the company you work for. If need be, get a doctor’s note or some form of documentation so that you have proof you were indeed sick.

Do not make it embarrassing for others by having them ask you to leave because you are spreading the heebie geebies. And as always, stay focused and stay fab!

Special thanks to my Twitter e-sister @Tanijoy for the topic idea. Follow her on Twitter!


  1. says

    I confess, I am one of these nasty germ-spreading people! Not due to lack of leave or love of my job (far from it, I assure you) but because an old manager of mine had the saying “unless you are dying of pneumonia, we expect you to come into work”. And it has taken almost a year to try and get out of that habit.

    My manager after that was pretty good though. I would walk into the office, she would look at me and say ‘GO HOME! We can sort your leave later’.

    My current manager though just doesn’t care, as long as you give him enough notice.

    A lot of people in our job though, won’t call in sick for a weekend shift, because they have to call the department leader, not just their personal manager, and explain why they’re not coming in to work.

    • says

      That is why I mentioned about bosses and managers who make their employees feel like they must come in when they are sick are doing their employees a disservice. I am glad to see that you are in a better position now to not feel as if you have to come in when sick :)

  2. Michelle says

    I totally agree with this! I have gotten sick too many times because someone came into work sick and was coughing and sniffling everywhere. It's no fun to have to waste your sick days, on well, being sick, but that's what they're there for!

  3. says

    I don't call off sick. Why? Because I know how it feels to be left holding the bag when someone calls in sick. The people I work with call in sick a lot (A LOT). Who does that leave doing all the work? ME. Maybe it's selfish, but it is what it is. That's why I don't call in, but to each his (or her) own.

  4. says

    I’ve gone into work sick because I had a boss that didn’t like to work. (She took a “sick day” at least once a week. Her mom owned the company so that’s why she could get away with it.) Also have gone into work at this same place while sick because an employee got upset that due to boss being “sick” and me being sick she was left in a lurch. She knew she couldn’t admonish the boss so she took it out on me for a good week. And I’ve learned if the attitude toward taking sick days is bad then odds are there are other things pointing to an unhealthy work environment. (My work environment at this place was extreme. Each day was like working in a 9 hour Jerry Springer episode. This boss would scream at each people. Coworkers would scream at each other. Doors would slam. The boss did coke in her office. I got out of there as soon as I could.)

    But luckily I’ve worked at other places where people were far more professional and reasonable. Those places understood if you were sick, you were sick. And usually people didn’t abuse the sick day policy.

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