Dear Aunty B,
About a month ago, one of my employees collapsed while at work. At the time, she claimed that it was just because of the hot weather, and she was back at work the following day.
This employee later took several days off because of an unexplained illness.
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Then, earlier this week, she collapsed while at work for a second time.
I don’t want to be nosy when it comes to her health but at the same time, I am concerned that my employee might have a serious health issue I need to be aware of as an employer.
What is the best approach?
Dear Healthy Concern,
You are right to care about the health and wellbeing of your team. So many business owners are so caught up in numbers, customers and stress that these things slip to the bottom of the list.
Normally I would say if your employee is working their normal hours, only using their allocated amount of sick days, gets a doctor’s certificate for time off and appears to be on the mend, I would keep an eye and ear out, but wouldn’t probe deeply at this stage.
However, in this case as she is collapsing in the workplace, you could have other repercussions if it were to happen again, such as a head injury.
Therefore I would invite them for a quick chat, say that for their safety you want to check in if there is anything you need to be aware of or prepared for. You are already aware you need to be tactful and sensitive, so you’re on the right track with how to ask.
Check your health and safety procedures are up to scratch, and refresh your team’s first aid knowledge in case anyone else has a health incident again.