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my sick leave policy

Oh my goodness it's cold/flu season again and every year around this time I have to have the same conversation with my team at work.

If you are sick, I don't want you to come to work. "Sick" means that your health is compromised in a way that will make you a less productive engineer. If you're a little sick, I'd rather you off for a day or two of rest and heal so we can have three good days this week with you, instead of five days dealing with you being sick with a lingering virus. If you have a contagious sickness that spreads to your coworkers, then you'll definitely hurt company productivity. Do a cost-benefit analysis.

Text or email are my preferred ways to learn that you are sick. A phone call or voicemail is okay too. Coming into my office and presenting your sick self to me in person is my least preferred method.

As a professional, I trust you when you say that you are sick. Just say "I'm not coming in today, I am sick." That's enough information.

I don't need to hear details about what's coming out of you, from where, for how long, anything about the consistency or chemical composition. I trust you. Also, that's disgusting. If you want to warn others you can offer up a simple "I believe this is a contagious respiratory virus" or "I am having digestive distress, possibly from the potato salad in the break room" - leave it at a high level summary.

Sympathy is not one of my strong points but let me assure you, we all hope you feel better soon. Lay on your couch, eat soup, watch the weird al "I'm calling in sick today" video that always cheers me up. Celebrate the fact that you work for a company that pays sick leave. This isn't elementary school, you don't get a certificate for perfect attendance. We'll see you in a couple days.

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Comments

( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
okoshun
Jan. 28th, 2017 03:49 pm (UTC)
Those are my thoughts exactly. I could have written it. :)
shutterbug
Jan. 28th, 2017 04:39 pm (UTC)
Awesome.

One of the downfalls about working for the medical system is that we have funky rules with PTO and sickness that my boss thinks it 'incentivizes employees" to come to work sick until they can't handle it anymore. The one "drop dead - stay home, no questions asked" symptom is fever.
rosemarymint
Jan. 28th, 2017 05:31 pm (UTC)
I work half the time in a shared computer lab with younger 20-somethings who have rotten personal hygiene habits when they are sick. I live in constant fear one of them is going to give me something awful because they've done it before. The other day I actually posted a not-so-nice note on our program's student facebook group about this and the whining I got back in return was just spectacular. They can study at home if they are sick. They all have laptops and can work at home if they are sick. They can cover their $*#*#*## mouth when they cough or sneeze.

They all are going to work in professional environments that have PTO. I guarantee that they will be the ones who have to get this lecture multiple times per year.
alphaloria
Jan. 28th, 2017 06:11 pm (UTC)
My company is the same. If you're sick, stay home. I feel like that makes us revolutionary, which is sad.
davesmusictank
Jan. 28th, 2017 08:22 pm (UTC)
Sound policy.
anais_pf
Jan. 28th, 2017 08:40 pm (UTC)
I wish all bosses were like you. The reason some people insist on telling you their symptoms (I am guessing, of course) is that there are bosses who don't believe their employees and say things like "she didn't sound sick."
ironphoenix
Jan. 28th, 2017 09:58 pm (UTC)
It shouldn't even need to be said, but it does.
hawk_soaring
Jan. 28th, 2017 10:13 pm (UTC)
*insert applause* I need to copy this, blow it up, and hang it on my office door. Then I need to lock that door and ignore everyone who comes knocking. I sent three different people home in the last week alone. I should not have to play mommy and tell you to stay home when you're obviously too sick to be at work -- especially when you can't even stand up straight. *sigh*
brittdreams
Jan. 28th, 2017 11:07 pm (UTC)
I wish we had sick leave at my job.
raisedinsuburbs
Jan. 29th, 2017 10:22 am (UTC)
A girl in my class not only comes in when she's sick, she doesn't even cover her mouth when she coughs or sneezes. She knows I have a compromised immune system and doesn't care but gets pissy when none of us will sit near her.
kirstene
Jan. 29th, 2017 02:39 pm (UTC)
The line "do a cost-benefit analysis" might work against you. Five days of work with a lingering virus pays the worker better than three days of productivity and two days of vacation time he had to spend at home sick.
aliki
Feb. 6th, 2017 12:55 am (UTC)
Is there a specified number of sick days an employee at your company can take?

See, for us, we have a limited number of paid sick days. And as a parent, you have to weigh those days when you feel a bit sick, with the knowledge when your kid is sick, they will be sent home and you will be forced to stay home with them (ie. use your sick days for when they are sick).

So... sometimes as parents, we don't go home when we are sick, because well, we need to save up for our kids' sick days.
spacefem
Feb. 6th, 2017 02:50 am (UTC)
rough! no we do not limit sick days. if your kid is sick that's personal leave or vacation, depending on how much time you need and whether you can take your laptop and get stuff done at home, which is common.
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )

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