Presenteeism involves working long hours when there is no need to do so. It can also involve coming to work when you should be at home. For example, you may be physically unfit due to an underlying illness. Alternatively you could be psychologically not focussed due to something happening in your personal life which is really upsetting you. Consequently, your overall performance and productivity will have fallen significantly, which has the potential to have a domino effect on your team’s performance as for example others catch the same virus as you.
How, as an employer or manager can you mitigate presenteeism in your workplace?
Promote a culture that if someone is sick, they should stay at home and recuperate. Avoid encouraging martyrdom, where people arrive into work regardless of their health. If someone insists in coming to work in a sickly state, it may be a good idea to pull them aside and advise them to go home and recuperate.
- Focus on the causes of presenteeism
If an employee has serious migraines and appears anxious and withdrawn this may be due to the stress of the workload they are under. The employee may require extra support and you may have to insist that they delegate some of their workload to a colleague in order to prevent your employee becoming overwhelmed.
Employee satisfaction surveys can provide you with useful insights with regards the causes of presenteeism in your organisation.
- Management Training
As a manager, you may require training to identify the symptoms of presenteeism. On the outside, an employee may appear fine but on the inside, they could be experiencing continuous pain or severe anxiety which is having a detrimental effect on their individual productivity. Promoting open communication channels and being able to read your employees is a tremendous skill to have. Also, initiating open communication when you spot symptoms of presenteeism which concern you is also a skill which may require additional training. You may also require training in regards how to act positively to help an employee overcome presenteeism in various scenarios.
According to the Global Corporate Challenge Report, presenteeism can cost an organisation 10 times more than absenteeism. Therefore strategic actions which mitigate and reduce presenteeism should be a top priority for every business.
To read about how presenteeism is costlier than absenteeism, please click here>>>