Nobody wants to get their coworkers sick. But sometimes, people think that they have to tough it out and show up, even if they don’t feel well. They may even think that coming in while under the weather is a way to show their commitment to the work. That’s why I think it’s important to be explicit; I’m quick to encourage teammates to stay home when they’re sick. This is especially important during flu season.
Taking care of a team includes a lot of responsibilities. I want my team to do everything they can to spread the word about One Medica’s unique approach to personal primary care, but it often seems like there aren’t enough hours in the workday. We have open conversations about work/life balance, look out for one another, and, as a leader, I do my best to to set norms and expectations that help everyone take good care of themselves.
Here are some ways you can look out for your team members during flu season. And of course, by helping them stay healthy, you can keep the group energetic, focused, and productive.
Encourage your team members to get a flu shot (at One Medical, of course).
Getting a flu shot is the best way to defend against the flu. This year, our clinical team will be administering the quadrivalent, or “quad” shot, which covers the four most common strains of the flu. That means that when your coworkers get the shot, they’ll be protected on four fronts. Members can walk in and get a flu shot — without an appointment — at any of our One Medical locations in over 20 cities.
Tell people to stay home from work when they’re sick.
Hopefully your team members will take your advice and get the flu shot. But if they do suspect they have the flu, tell them to stay home! The CDC recommends that someone with the flu should stay home for at least 24 hours after their fever is gone.
Expect employees to be out for about five days.
On average, adults with the flu are contagious for three to five days and miss between a half-day and five days of work. If you have to shift projects around, do it — it’s important to let your team members rest. People who try to do too much too soon may prolong their flu symptoms and end up being out of the office even longer. According to the CDC, the flu causes U.S. workers to lose up to 111 million workdays a year. You’ll be managing through it in good company.
I want to do everything I can to help the team feel inspired and prolific. Part of that means helping them tackle flu season so they can stay protected and do their best work. And if anyone in the marketing team does end up with the flu, it’s great to know our clinical colleagues will take great care of them.
The One Medical blog is published by One Medical, an innovative primary care practice with offices in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Phoenix, the San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, and Washington, DC.
Any general advice posted on our blog, website, or app is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace or substitute for any medical or other advice. The One Medical Group entities and 1Life Healthcare, Inc. make no representations or warranties and expressly disclaim any and all liability concerning any treatment, action by, or effect on any person following the general information offered or provided within or through the blog, website, or app. If you have specific concerns or a situation arises in which you require medical advice, you should consult with an appropriately trained and qualified medical services provider.