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According to a new research report published by specialist staffing group Accountemps (part of Robert Half International Inc.), among 5,494 HR and Finance Managers in 19 countries, there are big cultural differences by country in attitude towards taking time off during sickness.
On the question of whether people come to work when they should stay in bed in order to recover, 67% of Czechs said yes. The figures were equally high in Austria (59%), Germany (55%), Ireland (55%) and the UK (54%).
Lowest figures on employees going to work in spite of illness were registered in The Netherlands (16%), followed by Italy (28%), Belgium (31%), Spain (37%), Luxembourg (41%) and France (47%).
The main reasons given by most respondents for going to work in spite of illness were the avoidance of work building up and then not being on top of it as well as not getting a bad reputation with management and then losing their jobs.
However, the report also lists the most 'idiotic' excuses for those cases where people do take time off when they are not ill. Top among those were: 'my mother has died' (except everybody knows that she is already dead) and 'the dog has eaten the car keys'.