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Survey Finds Myriad of Excuses for Calling in Sick

Survey Finds Myriad of Excuses for Calling in Sick



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Keith McCord Reporting Bosses, supervisors, human resource managers hear them every morning, the voice mail from an employee calling in "sick".

"I am not going to be able to make it in today...last night a tree fell on top of my car..."

"Hi, this is Jane Hamilton, and I have a bit of an emergency. My curlers have burned my hair and I have to go to the hairdresser, so I won't be able to make it into work today. Thanks, bye bye."

Those are actual excuses that people have used. According to a recent national survey, 35 percent of workers admitted to calling in sick when they really weren't, during the past 12 months. So what are they doing? Some are trying to stretch a vacation an extra day, family issues, running errands, stress, and maybe just sleeping all day.

We did some sampling downtown for an excuse not to go to work:

"Just got out of jail. That's usually a good one."

And employers, listen up, you'll be hearing this one soon.

"It's all about the snowboarding, it's all about going up to mountains. They call in sick, because there's fresh powder."

In its national survey, Careerbuilder.com heard some doozies!

  • "I totaled my wife's jeep in a collision with a cow"
  • "My brain went to sleep and I couldn't wake it up"
  • "I hurt myself bowling"
  • "My bus broke down and I was held up by robbers"
  • "I was spit on by a venomous snake"
  • "This is Crystal and I tripped over my dog and was knocked unconscious, and I'm going to have to call in sick today."

We're not all liars; about 40 percent who call in sick really are under the weather. And we found one guy who swears he's never taken a sick day-- real or faked. Now that guy probably had perfect attendance all through high school and college too.

That old "My dog ate my homework" just won't work anymore! Gotta be creative.

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