Researchers have found that blokes fail to make it to the office for a total of 140 days during their career, while women phone in sick 189 times, with stomach bugs, dizziness and full on viruses the most common ailments keeping them bed-bound.
But despite the figures, it emerges women are more likely to ‘try their hardest to make it to their desk’ and ‘feel guilty’ if they succumb to a bout of the sniffles and end up dumping their workload on colleagues.
Lawrence Christensen from Benenden Healthcare Society, which carried out the survey of 1,000 men and 1,000 women, said: “While men are less likely to shake off the man flu and go to work, women do end up taking more sick days across their careers.
‘‘They might succumb to illness more easily, but women come out on top when it comes to dedication to work. Many men will pick up the phone as soon as they feel a little under the weather, while women soldier on for longer.
The study also found that 70% of women feel like they are unable to take any time off work, while 60% of men admit to the same pressure.
What’s more, two in three women and one third of men feel guilty if they have to let their boss know they’re staying at home because of illness.
Lawrence added that there is “great pressure” for both men and women make it to the office despite feeling under the weather. He said: “This is perhaps even more relevant considering the current weakness of the economy – are British workers being frowned upon if they take sick leave? Would employers rather their staff place their colleagues at risk of infection and illness?
“Employers need to ensure that their sickness absence management procedures are robust. Good, holistic approaches to employee health and wellbeing can result in greater productivity and lower instances of sickness absence.’’
Let’s discuss – when was the last time that you called in sick to work? Do you feel under pressure to go into the office despite feeling ill? Do you feel guilty when you have to take a sick day? Tell us in the comments below, send us a Tweet or post a message on our Facebook wall!
Image: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire