In light of President Obama signing an executive order mandating paid sick leave to 300,000 federal workers Business Talent Solutions put together a quick guide for taking sick leave.

Most Americans aren’t taking sick leave, even though it negatively impacts their long term health and their workplace. Taking sick leave can be hard to do, but it is important to be able to make the call that you are unwell and don’t want to pass your illness to the rest of your office- the company will function without you for the day.

employment sick day

Give Notice
Give your supervisor and team members as much notice as possible. Send out a quick e-mail and let them know that you’re under the weather (skip the details, please) and give them pertinent information regarding anything that needs to be handled that you were working on.

Reschedule your appointments
Touch base with everyone that you were supposed to spend time with and ask them for a time to reschedule. If it is impossible to reschedule- try to set up a skype meeting or arrange for a team-member to take this on for you.

Set up an Out of Office Response
Make sure that you set up an automatic e-mail response so that those trying to reach you will understand why you aren’t able to provide immediate response. Include a point of contact to give them immediate assistance if needed.

Do the work that you can
This doesn’t mean keeping your laptop in bed with you next to your box of tissues. But, if you are feeling better by mid-afternoon feel free to check your e-mail and tackle small projects so that you won’t be overwhelmed when you go back in.