This Is What Your Coworkers Are Really Thinking When You Cough in the Office

And exactly what your colleagues think when you're sneezing and sniffling right next to them.

By Prostock-studio/Shutterstock
By Prostock-studio/Shutterstock

No one really wins when they’re sick — especially workers.

Ladders have covered the ins-and-outs of workers going to work despite being sick in the past. Seventy percent of parents in the UK said they were guilty of sending their kids to school sick because of work, while a separate study found that 38% of workers still enter the office despite feeling unwell.

But what are some of the motives behind the American workforces’ inability to just take a sick day? They feel pressured to go to work, according to a new study.

A OnePoll study conducted with Robitussin found that 78% of employed respondents said they felt pressured to power through a workday when they were feeling sick due to the stress that comes with calling out sick.

The survey, which polled 2,000 Americans, found that 42% of respondents said the stress from attempting to call out created a mental wall from them being able to take a day. That’s probably why 69% of respondents said that a bad cough wasn’t a valid reason for them to stay home from work due to one in three fearing their boss wouldn’t consider it a valid reason to stay from work either.

Going to work sick might seem like a necessity in some places due to the fear of falling behind on work and being out of the loop for a few days, but your coworkers would appreciate it if you just stayed home.

Eighty-two percent of respondents said they’d be annoying if someone showed up to work at the office with just a cough. If that number isn’t enough of a warning sign, consider this: four in 10 respondents said they’d prefer to take on extra work than deal with a sick co-worker.

While it’s basically impossible to avoid getting sick, Americans would give up just about anything including vacation time (37%), social media (36%), their favorite food (33%), sleeping in on weekends (31%), and their favorite TV show (31%).

Top 5 stressful situations

1. Showing up to work sick: 46%
2. Sending kids to school knowing they’re sick: 44%
3. Canceling plans with friends or family due to illness: 44%
4. Feeling a cough coming right before an important presentation: 42%
5. Calling out of work sick: 42%

Originally published on Ladders.

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