When a coworker calls in sick...

I can't stand this mentality either. I grew up in a household where we kids were allowed to take what my mom called "mental health" days if we wanted to, 1, maybe 2, times a year. This meant laying around and watching TV, but not needing to be physically sick.

Someone needs a day off, for whatever reason, it's really nobody's business. Unless it's a persistent abuse of the situation.
Originally Posted by wild~hair
*guano*

my mom did this for us and I do this for my kids. Do you get flack for it from other people? Some folks think because kids dont have adult concerns they dont get stressed and need days off.

sorry to guano your thread.
Originally Posted by Aphro-Deeziac
I don't know if my mom got flack for it. I think she just told people we were sick!

Right now I freelance, so if I need a day off, I take it. OTOH, if I really am sick and there's a deadline or I've been hired for a special project, well, too bad for me.

Hey, how's your ankle? [sorry to double guano, Pixie]
Oh, and I had an assistant a while back who chronically called out sick nearly every week, either Friday or Monday. Thing of it is, like my job, they're full time jobs for a reason: we need someone here 5 days a week to operate smoothly. If we only needed someone to be here four days, we'd hire someone to be here four days. But if you've got a 5/8 job and you never work a five day week, that has a big impact on your coworkers. And she wasn't using earned days, either. She was just taking the day no-pay.

In the end, she got all the days no-pay. Fired.
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I can't stand this mentality either. I grew up in a household where we kids were allowed to take what my mom called "mental health" days if we wanted to, 1, maybe 2, times a year. This meant laying around and watching TV, but not needing to be physically sick.

Someone needs a day off, for whatever reason, it's really nobody's business. Unless it's a persistent abuse of the situation.
Originally Posted by wild~hair
*guano*

my mom did this for us and I do this for my kids. Do you get flack for it from other people? Some folks think because kids dont have adult concerns they dont get stressed and need days off.

sorry to guano your thread.
Originally Posted by Aphro-Deeziac
I don't know if my mom got flack for it. I think she just told people we were sick!

Right now I freelance, so if I need a day off, I take it. OTOH, if I really am sick and there's a deadline or I've been hired for a special project, well, too bad for me.

Hey, how's your ankle? [sorry to double guano, Pixie]
Originally Posted by wild~hair

healing but still a pain, lol. thank you so much for asking.
I think it quickly becomes apparent who the sick-fakers are within a given working environment...and the assumptions usually turn out to be true.
I never used to get sick and would go for years without missing a day of work.

Then I had a kid who goes to daycare.

I've missed more work this past year and a half than I have in my life. If I'm not sick, DD is sick. On the truly fabulous days, DD and DH are sick and I have to be home because he can't watch her.

There have been spells were I've missed at least one day of work a week. People with children in daycare all nod knowingly when I explain.

Any doubters can bite me.

Pixie, IMO, it sounds like your husband works with very juvenile and immature people who don't have enough work to do.
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Last year I was teaching high school, and I hated my job. I was going to be leaving that job after the school year was over, and I had some sick days built up, so I used them a bit more liberally than I would have otherwise. I was pregnant and I had regular doctor's appointments, and I usually took the whole day off when I had an appointment. I also took a few days when I wasn't feeling great but I probably could have gone in. With teachers, there's a system in place for calling in and getting a substitute for your class. I always left lesson plans and materials that were needed, and I never called in on "sub alert days," which were days that all the substitutes in the district were already assigned, which meant they would have to have regular teachers cover the classes on their planning periods. That job stressed me out so much that I don't really feel guilty about it.
It depends on the co-worker. If it's someone who's reliable and is very rarely out, I tend to believe them. If it's someone who's out all the time, I would think they're playing hookie.

And I totally understand about having kids - when they're sick, you generally have to be out. But I used to work with a girl who's son juuust haaappened to be sick every single Monday. Every single Monday without fail. "Poor kid" managed to stick his Mom with a three day weekend for the whole three years we all worked together.
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Last edited by LisaF1163; 02-24-2009 at 10:31 AM. Reason: Corrections!
I think that sucks for husband. Maybe he should think about making it a practice to always bring documentation in for unplanned FTO days.

I normally assume the person is sick. Of course as a child I was taught you better be pretty sick to not go to school/work, a little cold is not enough.
Unfortunately I'm home this week on sick days. I get the feeling my boss doesn't exactly trust that I need to be home, but I have a coworker who I know is backing me up. My healthcare providers office offered to write me a note, and I think I'll be taking them up on that offer. Similar to sarah42 though, I'm miserable in my current job, so if boss wants to fire me then she can just go ahead and do it
Ah, it all makes sense now. Goldy is the puppet master!
Originally Posted by Poodlehead
...so every Monday he was home, like clockwork she was "sick". I would have had more respect for her if she would have called in and said why she was really staying home.
Originally Posted by Amandacurls
but why should she have to say anything to anyone? if she planned to use only vacation time to be home with her husband on those mondays, would you still prefer that she say how she plans to spend her day off? why does she have to satisfy anyone's curiosity about what she plans to do away from work?

to me, it goes back to those things being none of my business.

most people earn their sick and vacation time based on actual continuous hours worked. so once they've earned it, no one should even bother to wonder why or how they use it, sick or vacation. that's just me.
Originally Posted by rainshower
Well, the frustrating thing was Monday was our busiest day of the week and even at full staff we would have been swamped, so one less person, who was in a co-leadership position with me and was supposed to be helping train others and check their work, and then it all fell to me every other Monday, well I got a little bit frustrated. If she would have picked any other day of the week it wouldn't have been a big deal, but Mondays were horrendous. AND she ended up using up all her vacation AND sick hours doing the every other Monday thing and then she started coming in all the time. And so then when she got sick, she infected the whole office because she had no sick days to use. And yeah, it was none of my business, but it was definitely a frustrating position to be in, as her coworker.
I can't stand this mentality either. I grew up in a household where we kids were allowed to take what my mom called "mental health" days if we wanted to, 1, maybe 2, times a year. This meant laying around and watching TV, but not needing to be physically sick.

Someone needs a day off, for whatever reason, it's really nobody's business. Unless it's a persistent abuse of the situation.
Originally Posted by wild~hair
*guano*

my mom did this for us and I do this for my kids. Do you get flack for it from other people? Some folks think because kids dont have adult concerns they dont get stressed and need days off.

sorry to guano your thread.
Originally Posted by Aphro-Deeziac
I did this for my daughter, too. I think it's really important for kids to be able to destress.


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My employees tell me up fron when they are taking mental health days, but even then, I don't care. It's their leave not mine, use it how you want. The only time I would be concerned, and this has not happened in my office, is if an employee took off so much time that it began to effect the workload on the other employees.
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My employees tell me up fron when they are taking mental health days, but even then, I don't care. It's their leave not mine, use it how you want. The only time I would be concerned, and this has not happened in my office, is if an employee took off so much time that it began to effect the workload on the other employees.
Originally Posted by gekko422
Agreed.
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Rock on with your bad self.

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Be excellent to each other. ~ Abraham Lincoln

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I generally believe co-workers when they call in sick, but there is one person I have my suspicions about and the absences of this person do affect me in terms of workload. Obviously I don't gossip about it at all; it's just a private suspicion. We don't have separate set leave for sickness where I work. You have your holiday leave and when you're sick, you just call in sick.
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I don't pay much attention to it, and haven't for quite some time. My work has the "PTO" thing, with vacation and sick time wrapped into one. Plus the team I am on works in so many different locations, that I don't know if people are actually in the office or working from home half of the time, either.

The previous job I had (same company) I didn't pay attention either, and it was a job where working from home wasn't an option. Someone would call in sick and that was it, or call in and say their kid was sick, no one really seemed to question it.

I did have a position about 10 years ago where people would do this, and I even had a co-worker approach my boss (one day when I called in sick) and say, "She's not sick, did you hear her talking yesterday about how she didn't want to come in?" While it was true that I did talk about not wanting to come in, I did end up getting the stomach flu that night, and called in sick the next day. So, at that point I learned that I wouldn't ever complain or talk about not wanting to be there, not wanting to come in or whatever.
I wouldn't care at all if people were responsible about it - you know your workload, you know what needs to be done, I don't need to manage your vacation/time off schedule. As long as your work is done well and on time, I don't care how many days you take off. When people fake sick and call in last minute and don't find coverage for their work that pisses me off. Don't make me scramble to find someone to do your work for you, when you could have done so yourself the day before. I work in a service environment and I can't call the clients and say oh sorry, so and so is sick, work stops today!
I haven't got the slightest idea how to change people, but I still keep a long list of prospective candidates just in case I should ever figure it out.
We have separate sick time and vacation time, so I'm supposed to be ON IT all the time, but honestly, so long as my people aren't going in the hole on sick or vacation, I don't really care.

I agree about trying to use it responsibly if you're just using sick time to "call in ugly" as my sister says.
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Rock on with your bad self.

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Be excellent to each other. ~ Abraham Lincoln

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When I worked in corporate child care, we were employees of the company, and had paid sick leave, up to 15 days per year. Most years, we did not have a substitute on staff, so if some one was absent, we had to scramble to make sure there was adequate coverage in all classes. So most of us only called in sick if we really needed it. Not easy, considering that we worked in one big germ fishbowl. One particular person, though, made it very clear that since the company "gives' her so many days a year, she is entitled to take them all, whatever the reason. That was on top of the 3 weeks of vacation time she had. After a while, it did create some tension among the staff, with some individuals making some comments to her after she returned to work. I don't know if the boss ever spoke to her.
We have separate sick time and vacation time, so I'm supposed to be ON IT all the time, but honestly, so long as my people aren't going in the hole on sick or vacation, I don't really care.
Originally Posted by PartyHair
We do too and I actually had my boss's boss call me and question the amount of leave an employee had left at the end of the year. Apparently said boss lady thought that the employee should carry over more leave and I should not be granting her leave. It's HER leave and unless I have good reason to say no, I am not denying anyone leave.
Democracy is not a spectator sport.

You know why pandas are endangered? Cause pandas ain't got no game.

Jesus loves you, but I'm his favorite.
It is not an issue at my job as my boss has told us that it's okay to take a sick day if you wake up and just don't feel like coming in. It takes a load off. But if someone else takes a sick day I don't go off on a tangent thinking they're interviewing for something else and then broadcast that to my coworkers.

I grew up in a house where you had to be deathly ill to stay home. I can probably count the sick days on one hand--which means there were many times when I went to school when I should have stayed home. In 7th grade I learned we would be moving across country. I was so worked up over the news I threw up. The following day was the first time I took a self-imposed mental health day. My mom was mad at me for it, but it helped me feel better.
I grew up in a house where you had to be deathly ill to stay home. I can probably count the sick days on one hand--which means there were many times when I went to school when I should have stayed home. In 7th grade I learned we would be moving across country. I was so worked up over the news I threw up. The following day was the first time I took a self-imposed mental health day. My mom was mad at me for it, but it helped me feel better.
Yep. Here too. I was so baffled when my bosses would take mental health days at one of my college jobs.

It's been a while since I've done so but I think that's legitimate use of sick leave.

I personally feel that it's sneaky to use sick leave to interview but if others do it, I would never lambaste them nor spread gossip that it might be the case. That's just juvinile.
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