Sick. Isn’t that what the kids say for ‘good’ these days? In my day, ‘sick’ meant lying on the couch under a duvet so thick that it crushed your chest, watching repeats of The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, and drinking gallons of Lucozade out of a glass bottle.
But I digress.
Hands up those of you reading this that have thrown a sickie? Anyone? Okay, I’ll take one for the team – I’m guilty of this. A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, I worked in the warehouse for a well-known supermarket and I despised the place. I despised it so much that I once threw a sickie 20 minutes after I’d started my shift. I chewed up a load of cough sweets, cupped my hands together, held them close to my face and blew my menthol-loaded breath into my eyes. I then went to the shift manager, made a point of showing him my now-streaming eyes, and half an hour later I was sat at home eating chocolate and playing Crash Bandicoot.
I lost a day’s pay through that little stunt, but I hated the place so much that it was worth it just to wrench myself out of the mental funk that my workplace regularly put me in. The sad thing is, I know that I wasn’t alone in feeling this way. According to a Kantar survey, 8.6 million of us have put on our best ‘I’m ill,’ voice and enjoyed a duvet day for this very reason.
Perversely, though, 12 million of us have gone to work when we are genuinely ill. This is either because we fear to take the time off due to the work that will pile up in the meantime, we don’t want to ‘waste’ a paid sick day, or we simply just can’t afford to have unpaid time off. And what’s even weirder than that? Most employers are okay with that. It doesn’t matter to them that a bout of flu might take out team members one-by-one like an invisible vampire – as long as you can drag yourself in and keep the wheels turning, a lot of bosses will turn a blind eye. And we wonder why people can’t stand where they work…
If we look deeper than the obvious hatred people have for their jobs and the lack of empathy a lot of workplaces have for their employees, what causes this situation in the first place? The answer is that the worker and the workplace are incompatible. This might be because the employer has promised something they haven’t delivered on, the candidate hasn’t been truthful on their application, a simple clash of personalities, or a million-and-one other reasons.
Regardless of the issue, this could have been picked up prior to the interview stage and avoided. This is the foundation that Mercury Hampton have built their business upon. Using a combination of cutting-edge, award-winning technology, psychometric profiling, video assessment, competency questioning, and the traditional CV, we have attained a 96% retention rate over 12 months, and a 94% retention rate over 24 months. The reason these figures are so high is that we match candidate AND client, so we can be assured of the best possible fit.
“I Told You I was Ill” – Spike Milligan (1918-2002)
People get ill, it’s an unavoidable fact of life. What is avoidable, though, is the culture of feeling like you have to turn in even though you feel like death-warmed-up, or feeling so mentally unwell that you’d rather lose money than go to work. Take 6 minutes out of your life to watch this quick demonstration of what Mercury Hampton IQ can do for your business, and reap the rewards of a unified workplace.
In the meantime, I’m off to see if you can still buy Lucozade in a glass bottle in case the Coronavirus comes a-knocking.