presenteeism

Healthy Employees Make Healthy Companies

If wealth is lost, nothing is lost. If health is lost, surely something is lost. So, physical fitness of the employees is very important. There are organizations which ask for a fitness certificate at the time of appointment. There are also organizations which insist on the periodical medical check -up of their employees.

In such a situation, will any company make its employees sick? No company will make its employees deliberately sick. But, quite unintentionally, many companies are making their employees sick.

It all started with the fashionable notion of transformational leadership. Originally, it was with good intention. Transformational leadership was then associated with positive employee well being. Transformational leadership then ensured better sleep quality and fewer depressive symptoms. Naturally, this reduced absenteeism.

University of East Anglia wanted to measure the contribution of the transformational leadership. In the process, the University made the shocking discovery that the transformational leadership had done more disservice and less service.

The University has found out that inspiring bosses produce perspiring employees. If an employee is persuaded to perform beyond his limit, it definitely affects his health. It will increase the sickness absence rate.

In addition to the evil of absenteeism, a new evil has crept in. This new evil is called presenteeism. Unable to resist the “inspiration” of a transformational leader, if a sick employee also shows up for work, presenteeism takes place.

Presenteeism is as harmful to the company as absenteeism. The focus must be on the real health of the employees, not just their apparent health. Even as healthy citizens make a healthy country, healthy employees make a healthy company. The concept of inspiration, persuasion and transformation should not exceed the limit like the last straw on the camel’s back. So, moderation will be beneficial to the employees as well as to the company.

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