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Calling in Sick, Guilt-Free

By on January 12, 2016

Who has not called off work sick when you really fine? It happens. But in this economy and with employers becoming more savvy,  you  need to be careful about what you say and how often you give the “too sick to work excuse.”

Remember that calling off to a voicemail is preferred than a live person because then you are subjected to follow up questions that can undermine your whole story. Giving too much detail in your lie is the ultimate no-no. Only liars tell stories of how their symptoms, the circumstances of how they became ill, etc.  Keep the call short and to the point.

While we’re not condoning telling tales to get out of work but if you must, try not to dig yourself in a hole in the process.

Here are four basic “get out of jail…err work” options.

  • “I’m in bad shape and I just don’t think it would be right to you or the team to come to work in this condition – I’d be pretty useless like this.”
  • “I’m using a sick day today. But please call me if anything needs my attention (the sentiment will be appreciated and no one almost never calls).”
  • “Hi, this is so-and-so; I cannot make it out of the house today. I’ve been up since 2:00 am.”
  • “I’m not feeling well at all, I have a bad case of stomach flu.”

Some suggest making the phone call to your boss while on your back – you automatically sound nasal and stuffy. Whatever you do, don’t be arrogant and “schedule” a sick day in advance (or tell colleagues) because if your supervisor finds out you will be in hot, hot water.

And for goodness sake, avoid sick days the day before or after your regularly scheduled vacation, a big concert, a holiday, etc. all are dead giveaways. Lastly, try not to overuse a “too sick to work” excuse, because what happens if you really get sick?

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