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How To Take A Sick Day When You Run Your Own Small Business

Last week, we talked about ‘How to Run Your Small Business From Home‘, revolving around working away from the office or business premises to give you more flexibility when, or should, you need it.

Here, we’re going to provide you with information on how you can stay at home and recover when you’re ill as a small business owner, without worrying about whether your business is going to suffer.

Know someone you can rely on

One of the most important things any small business owner can do when thinking about time off in any capacity is to hire or make friends with someone you can rely on.

You might think that you can run your small business all by yourself, but there’ll come times – such as if you were to need a day off sick – when you need to pass some duties to another person temporarily.

Whether it’s an employee, a trusted colleague or a suitable friend or family member, having someone who you can effectively hand the keys to your business over to for a few hours is a fantastic cushion to have.


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Invest in a smartphone

When you’re in bed ill, the last thing you want to be doing is getting out to head to the office – even if it’s a home office – and so with a smartphone, you can maintain that vital link to your customers and employees without leaving your bed.

By giving you the ability to check your e-mail (which is just one of a number of fantastic and useful features), it might not seem particularly professional e-mailing from your bed, but the only person who’s going to know that is you.

Plan in advance

Something that every small business should do but not something every small business actually does, planning in advance for every eventuality removes – or decreases the effect of – what could in theory be a disastrous situation.

Your plan doesn’t need to be particularly in-depth, but  you should have something in place, written down, that you can refer to which details exactly what needs to be done should you, in this instance, require a day off sick.

Don’t be afraid to be ill

One of the problems that many small business owners have is that they work such long hours that it’s inevitable they’re going to be ill at some point, if not simply for the fact that they’re going to be exhausted.

However, most small business owners don’t understand that they aren’t super human and they are actually allowed to be ill.

OK, it might be a bit difficult trying to keep your business afloat if you’re off ill for several weeks, but you shouldn’t feel guilty about being ill and taking a day off from running your business if you genuinely are sick and can’t make it in.

As long as you’ve got something in place to ensure that your service delivery doesn’t suffer, taking one full sick day and returning feeling a lot better will be a whole lot more beneficial than trying to run your business feeling under the weather for a week or two.

Everyone’s ill at some point and just because you’re a small business owner doesn’t mean that you’re immune to every illness.  Taking a day off sick needn’t affect your business in a negative way, however, as long as you’re fully prepared, as the more planning and preparation you’ve done, the easier it will be to take a day off to get over being ill.

This post was originally shared on April 20, 2011.

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