Posts Tagged ‘sick days’

Managers Call In Sick More Than Employees

Seen in USA Today: more evidence it pays to be careful where you work. A poll of 60,651 people taken by Replicon shows that managers used 3.6 sick days a year and non management employees used 2.8. It also showed summer is the time most folks call in sick, which does make for some suspicion as to the possibility the sickness is either fictitious—or from too much fun in the sun.

What does this say to job seekers? Note that in the US, no vacation time is mandated by law: “The U.S. federal government dictates that employees are given exactly zero paid holiday and vacation days a year (that means, if you get such things, it is because your employer is being generous/in a benefits arms race with other employers). In most countries workers gat paid vacation by law: “In every country … except Canada and Japan (and the U.S.), workers get at least 20 paid vacation days.  In France and Finland, they get 30… an entire month off, paid, every year.”

What this says to me, boys and girls, is you really had best do what you love, and love what you do. And if you really DO love what you are interviewing for this will be very clear in the interview.

Now, some of you will be interviewing for management jobs. This means more pay—and more stress. So, again—if you love the job, and dare I hope PEOPLE, you are once again at the top of the heap.

Just remember… everyone can’t finish first. That is one reason this blog is not for everyone. Only those seeking true excellence and service.



All Work and No Play

Seen on another blog: “Do they take sick days?  If so, how frequently?  Are they motivated and fully engaged? Do they conduct themselves in a professional manner?  Do they respond well to constructive criticism?  These may seem like obvious questions, but most executives and managers neglect to ask them and think about them critically.”


Scary. If you get sick you are a bad employee.


Funny thing—I never called in sick when I was working. Never. (I was sick once in college and once since I got out of law school, but I tend not to get colds. But most people do. That’s why “sick days” exist.


So on what basis can any employer hold it against their workers if they use them? Now, if the employees is not really sick that might be a concern. But is might also be a symptom. If this is a “bad” employee—one who does not want to work, or is not happy at that job—who hired them? Who is really missing the mark here?


But deep down most folks want to work and they want to be happy at work. They want to know they matter- to the mission and to the organization. It’s human nature. If a company has managers who believe otherwise there is REALLY something wrong.


By the way—people do need time off. In the military I had 30 days if leave a year. RIGHT AWAY. I didn’t have to work a full year to get it—it was simply part of the package. Somehow the United States managed to service with 100% of its military members having all this free time.


For what it is worth “flex time” is a hot topic these days in HR. Treating people well is an investment in the “bottom line.” Most workers have families. Children who are in day care and school much of the day. Many have aging parents they care for. (By the way when the FMLA was passed employers screamed bloody murder… but I have yet to hear of a single one closing its doors due to this law. The big corporations are richer then ever…)


And as Peter Drucker pointed out in “first Things First” no one has even been heard to utter, on their death bed: “I wish I’d spent more time at work…” So pick your job well!