Anorak News | Blue Sky Thinking

Blue Sky Thinking

by | 24th, May 2004

‘IT is worth remembering that had Lucy Pinder not decided to bunk off work last August and spend the day on the beach, the world would be a very different place.

Lucy put the FF into a DAY OFF

If nothing else, there would be one more student at King Alfred’s College in Bournemouth and two fewer indentations in the sand on Bournemouth beach.

Maybe it is the hope of following in Lucy’s footsteps that will persuade so many workers to throw a sickie today; maybe it is just the lure of a suntan.

But, according to the Independent, good weather is responsible for large rise in absenteeism with many employees taking ‘unwarranted’ long weekends.

The CBI’s annual absence survey shows that 176 million working days were lost last year – a rise of 10 million on the year before – at a cost to employees of £11.6bn.

And 78% of the more than 500 companies that took part in the survey suspect that staff add unauthorised days to their weekends by calling in sick on Fridays and Mondays.

Presumably, the other 22% knew that staff wagged on those days (or were not in the office when the qustion was asked).

‘Firms understand that the majority of absence is due to genuine minor sickness,’ CBI’s deputy director general John Cridland said when we caught up with him on Blackpool beach.

‘But absence is a serious and expensive concern that is on the increase.’

Public sector workers are the most likely to take a day off sick, averaging 8.9 days on the beach a year compared with 6.9 days in the private sector.

Employees of big companies are also more prone to wag, with workers in organisations of more than 5,000 employees taking 10.2 days off a year compared with just 4.2 days in companies with fewer than 50 staff.

At Anorak Towers, we are pleased to report that absenteeism last year was again 0.

(The last member of staff at Anorak to take a sick day was Mr Shaikh in March 1996 – and it later turned out that he had in fact died over the course of the weekend.)

Interviewed in his penthouse office, old Mr Anorak himself attributed this record to ‘a happy and healthy working environment’.

And to team-building exercises that have since been borrowed by US soldiers in Abu Ghraib prison…’

Posted: 24th, May 2004 | In: Broadsheets Comment | TrackBack | Permalink