Is it time to chuck a sickie?

Business Coaching

Is it time to chuck a sickie?

Why should your staff have all the fun?

Yesterday on the way in to the office you got a text message from one of your guys, Jimmy, saying he wasn’t coming in because he was sick. Jimmy didn’t really look all that sick to you the day before, chances are he’d just had a big night and wanted to sleep off his hangover.

So how come your staff get to do that?

You run around all day, always another crisis on site, always another client with an “issue”; the phone never stops. Your life is hardly your own anymore.

When was the last time you slept in on a Wednesday?  Or better yet, when did you last “chuck a sickie”?
Do you even remember what a sickie is? Let me remind you: A sickie is a way of saying to the world and to yourself: “Today is a day for me, everybody else can take a flying jump”

What would happen if you did chuck a sickie? Tomorrow!

Would the business fall over? Would your plumbers and apprentices simply walk away? Will your clients all decide to sue you?


If you find yourself nodding your head in response to those possible disasters: whatever you do, don’t read the next few paragraphs, honest, trust me on this, you will not enjoy it.

But if you say: “no, actually, not much will probably go wrong”, I have a challenge for you:

Tonight when you go to bed: send 1 text message (1 only) to your most trusted employee: “I am sick and in bed all day, tell everyone, phones are turned off, see you Thursday morning, if I feel better”

Then turn off your mobile unplug the phone, close the lid on the laptop, put the alarm in the kitchen and go to sleep.
When you wake up at the normal time, as you undoubtedly will, turn over and go back to sleep. DO NOT get out of bed until your joints and muscles are so stiff that it is now uncomfortable to stay in bed.

Spend the day reading, eating, walking, watching Dr. Phil and Oprah. In other words:


I know I know, I can hear your objections from here.
This is scary stuff, a real challenge. It is all very well to plan and book a holiday months ahead, but a sickie on the spur of the moment, is something else altogether.

You have three choices:

  1. Give in to the objections, click away from this article
  2. Address each and every objection and reason them out.
  3. Say: Bugger it, I will sort things out on Thursday

How good would a day like that be?  Do you think you deserve a day for you?  No one else?  Have you earned it?

And how would your spouse feel if you took a day like that together? A whole day of bugger all and no one else but the two of you?

Now for those of you expect the disasters: I warned you! It was no fun reading those last paragraphs, was it?

So my challenge to you is: Make it a priority to change your business and your work and your life in such a way that you can “chuck a sickie” without the world coming to an end.

And by the way… I’d love to hear from any of you who take up my challenge!
If Jimmy can watch Dr. Phil for a day, don’t you think you should?

Roland Hanekroot

Founder at New Perspectives Business Coaching

I'm a small business coach, mentor, and author on a mission to help Family business and small business owners build Great Small businesses and make Business Fun. Download my book for free at:

Comments (2)
Adam Bean

Adam Bean, Marketing Superintendent at

Awesome Roland, I would only do one thing differently. My text would simply say, I am not coming in tomorrow, you are in charge. No need to lie, taking time off is as important as working hard. You have to have balance. Cheers Beanie

Neil Steggall

Neil Steggall, Partner at Wardour Capital Partners

Great article Roland. We all need to step back and recognise that not only can we take a day off but its a win-win as both you and the business benefit. Seasons Greetings etc. and have a great 2014. Cheers, Neil.