My staff are taking Melbourne Cup sickies. What do I do?

Dear Aunty B,

I need some urgent help. My business is in Melbourne, and I’ve come into work this morning and found two employees have suddenly “taken ill”.

I’m more than a bit sceptical as tomorrow is the Melbourne Cup public holiday and the temptation of a four-day weekend is huge.

I’m sitting here furious, but what can I practically do?

Not Up For The Cup,



Dear Not Up For The Cup,

It all comes back to whether you have policies in place around this sort of thing. For example, do you have a clear policy that says anyone who is sick either side of a weekend or a public holiday needs to have a doctor’s certificate?

I’m tipping you don’t, so I suggest channelling your anger into being prepared. On Wednesday or Thursday, get everyone together and tell them that there are going to be some changes around leave policies.

A month before every public holiday, you will now call for anyone who wants extra leave to ask for it. And then make everyone aware of the new doctor’s certificate policy that is in place.

Most of all, make it clear that these policies will be enforced. You don’t mind people taking four-day holidays as long as the business has time to prepare and everyone is transparent.

But if people are going to take sickies, there will be consequences.

Be smart,

Your Aunty B

To read more Aunty B advice, click here.

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