5 Examples Of What To Say When Calling In Sick

what to say when calling in sick to work

When you’re calling in sick to work, you might not know exactly what to say. Or how you might need to say it. It can be stressful. And feel like you might say something that knocks your employment record. But we’re going to cover call templates and scripts that you can use when speaking to your boss to ensure that you get the sick day you need.

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Calling In Sick Tips

There are a few things to cover before we jump into the templates. Firstly, are you truly sick? If you’re trying to call in sick to get a day off, try thinking about excuses to get out of work instead of calling in sick. The reason is, your manager or supervisor will still give you the day off if you have the right excuse. But if you pretend to be sick, you could get terminated for lying.

If you are truly sick, be sure that you don’t do these things:

What To Say When Calling In Sick To Work

Here are a few things you can say when calling in sick to work. Ideally, you should send a sick day email, because they’re a little easier to craft and it alleviates the pressure of talking to your supervisor.

Template 1:

Hey John, I’m really not feeling well today. I don’t know what’s wrong but I’m just not feeling myself. I hope I’m not coming down with a cold or flu. I was wondering if it would be okay if I stayed at home today. I would hate to get anyone else sick.

Template 2:

Hey John, I woke up this morning and started to feel pretty crummy. My niece was sick and I think I might have caught what she had. Is it okay if I work from home today?

Template 3:

Hey John, I am just not feeling well today. I know things are pretty busy at the office but I would hate to get anyone else sick and risk productivity at the company. Is it okay if I stay home today and unplug?

Template 4:

Hey John, I woke up this morning and my throat feels like it’s on fire. Not sure what’s wrong. I think I might head to the doctor. Is it okay if I take a leave of absence today?

Template 5:

Hey John, Not sure if I have any sick days left or not. But I am not feeling well. Is it possible if I can stay at home today?

Be Sure To Mention Company Productivity

There’s no better way to ask to stay home than to mention that you don’t want to get others sick. Going into the office and risking getting your other employee’s sick will make you appear as though you lack empathy for your coworkers.

Mention this during your phone call. Mention the fact that you really would hate to get others ill and cause productivity issues at the company.

Ask If You Can Work From Home

If you’re in an industry that is mostly digital, you might be able to ask whether or not you can work from home. If you are feeling up to it and your supervisor mentions you can work from home, disregard our tips from above. You should check your email, use slack, and generally keep your daily work requirements in balance.

If you need to, feel free to rest when working from home. This is a major benefit. But be sure to set an alarm to awaken from any nap that you might take after 30-minutes. If you become unresponsive to coworkers, they might think you were telling a tale about not feeling well.

Other Time Off Resources

author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is an experienced executive who has spent a number of years in Silicon Valley hiring and coaching some of the world’s most valuable technology teams. Patrick has been a source for Human Resources and career related insights for Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, and many more.


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