Today's topic: "Calling in Sick."
Little did we know that today is actually National Sickie Day! The first Monday in February, historically, is the most popular day in the United States to call in sick! One news article estimated that over 40 million Americans would call in sick today.
The #1 reason why Americans call in sick is because they are recovering from Super Bowl Sunday, with the vast majority of Americans believing that Super Bowl Sunday should be a national holiday. Other ideas about why people call in sick -- it is the first Monday after January's pay check, or for people who are considering a new job for the new year -- they are at job interviews.
We began with a fun activity in which students received 10 slips of paper with excuses for calling in sick. British medical insurance agency AXA PPP Health Care recently did a study which surveyed employers as to what would be the most accepted reasons to call in sick. We scrambled up the reasons and students were asked to put them in order, with #1 being the most acceptable reason to call in sick. I got this idea from this news article.
Here is the correct scale. The percentages indicate the share of managers who found the excuse to be a "serious enough reason for an employee to be absent from work."
1. Flu (41.6%)
2. Back pain (38.5%)
3. Injury caused by accident (38.2%)
4. Stress (34.5%)
5. Elective surgery (35.2%)
6. Depression (34.5%)
7. Anxiety (25.4%)
8. Common cold (23.8%)
9. Migraine (21.7%)
10. None of the above (7.7%)
Source: Reader's Digest
Then, we did a demo of a "good" calling in sick scenario, and a "bad" calling in sick scenario.
Afterwards, we took notes on tips for calling in sick:
At the end of class, students took out their phones and we had each student role play calling in sick.
We played a YouTube sound clip of the iPhone ringing, and acted like we were managers picking up the phone, and students role played calling in sick. The students did GREAT!!!! They were nervous, but we explained to them that the more they plan out what they are going to say and practice, the easier it will be.