We have all been there. Running a high fever, but there’s just too much work to do. What would be right thing to do?

There here is is no right answer in this situation. Taking sick leave (aka taking MC) would mean more time spent when you are back in action, catching up on the work that had been left undone. This is an obvious loss in productivity. Co-workers may also cast you dirty looks, since they have to work longer hours to cover your files. That being said, actually taking sick leave might not be a better alternative either. Since it would be hard to fully recuperate without proper rest, and this would thereby further lower productivity and morale. Not to mention, it might even cause the spread of the contagious virus to your fellow co-workers.

This is a classic situation of being caught between the devil and a hard place.

Your final decision would depend on a host of factors, ranging from whether you need to be physically present to complete the work, the severity of your illness and even the attitude of your boss in relation to your taking of sick leave. The only way to weigh upon these factors to decide on your final answer is by communication.

Talk to people. Find out what their position is. For example, if you are genuinely ill and feel that staying in the office is of no benefit anyway since you are groggy on medication and unfit to work, tell your boss. Even if work is urgent, an understanding boss would definitely be able to negotiate a situation. Perhaps you can suggest resting and responding to the more crucial emails from home? Or maybe join in important meetings via Skype or FaceTime. Speak to your co-workers, see how they feel about covering your duties for the days you are taking sick leave.

As long as you think through such factors carefully, you will arrive at the right decision.

Trust in such a situation, would be crucial. Gain the trust of your boss and fellow co-workers by not crying wolf and abusing the sick leave system on other days. In most organizations, it appears that taking sick leave on Mondays or Fridays, for small bouts of flu / fever are becoming a common occurence. The reason is obvious, simply because people would like to enjoy a long weekend.


Take A Stand

Richard is facing a lot of pressure at work and his boss, Farah, is counting on him to do well for a major client presentation tomorrow. He’s experiencing flu-like symptoms, but that shouldn’t matter – should it? What should Farah do?

To help Farah decide, include either #LetsGOsg for home, or #LetsSTAYsg to keep working, in your public comments below. What you say could win you an iPad Mini! Details here: http://on.fb.me/1blPuFV

The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. A lucky winner will be chosen by the Popspoken team on 17 November 2013, and announced on 19 November 2013.