Quick tips: If you are sick please just stay home

This is the first article of a series called Quick tips. Articles will be either short tutorials (straight to the point) or short common-sense reflections. Today's article is an example of the latter

So, here's the thing: if you are feeling ill, you should stay at home and wait until you recover. This is especially important with Covid-19 floating around, but it applies to any illness you might have.

Oh, but I AM an important part of the team!

You are, but that's not the point.

I know it doesn't seem right. After all, they need you at work and if you are absent for a couple of days the whole thing will collapse. I know that's exactly what it feels like, but let me assure you:

You are not that important, and even if you get hit by a bus, they'll manage.

This idea is a bit hard to digest for two main reasons:

  • Yes, I know I am important, but that's not the same as being indispensable. While my team would face adversity in the face of my untimely demise, they will eventually manage even without me.
  • Knowing that people will manage without me is at stake with my idea of self-worth as a professional.

Trust your team, I am sure things will work out.

Yes but what if they can't deliver in time?

If, on the other hand, you are worried about the team's productivity falling behind while you are away, I have great news for you: They will be better with you recovering at home. This is due to 3 things, mainly:

  • When you are sick you are much less productive, no surprises here.
  • Working while sick will make the healing process slower. It's more efficient (in the long run) to properly recover and go back to work when you feel better.
  • Your chances of infecting your teammates are quite high. This is the main reason you need to stay home: Any potential productivity gain you could provide by going to the office is nothing compared to the damage you can do to the whole team by making them sick.

Seriously, stay at home and get better. You deserve it, your team deserves it, and your clients deserve it. It's not a sign of weakness, it's not irresponsible, and it's not selfish. It's the best thing you can possibly do.

So if you feel sick, work from home or take sick leave, everyone will love you for that.

Author image
Budapest, Hungary
Hey there, I'm Juan. A programmer currently living in Budapest. I believe in well-engineered solutions, clean code and sharing knowledge. Thanks for reading, I hope you find my articles useful!