How many times have you dragged yourself to work with a cold or the flu? Your joints ache, you have a fever, and your nose won’t stop running, but you have a deadline, so in you go. All across America, people show up to work ill. Some assume they will be punished for their absence, while others only need the money. However, if not monitored, this “presenteeism” can cause companies more harm than good.
Presenteeism is defined as “coming into work while ill.” It would seem that employers would prefer employees to attend work no matter their condition, but a study has concluded that this can be detrimental to their profits. Conducted by the Integrated Benefits Institute, this study surveyed more than 400 recent business school graduates and found that businesses could potentially lose around 227 Billion due to presenteeism.
227 billion is an incredibly high number, but it hasn’t swayed many employers in allowing their employees to take time off for medical reasons. However, a few states are taking the initiative to force companies to pay employees for a few sick days to prevent the unnecessary spread of disease, but even this program doesn’t stop some people from attending for many reasons.
If you do feel the need to attend work while sick or notice an ill co-worker, there are steps you can follow to keep the workplace healthy. First, to prevent the spread of airborne pathogens make sure you sneeze into a tissue, the crook of your elbow, or a protective mask. Additionally, make sure to disinfect any surfaces with a quality disinfectant, like Safetec’s SaniZide Pro wipes, and wash your hands often with anti-microbial hand soap. If you follow these steps, you can help promote a healthy workplace.