What were the weirdest excuses used in small businesses on ‘National Pull A Sickie Day’?


February 1st was National Pull a Sickie Day, the day where, statistically, employees are most likely to ring in ill.

Wen pulling a sickie most people will use the usual excuses of having a stomach bug, the flu, or a child being sick to avoid detection however for some people, the normal excuses just won’t do.

This year Bizdaq polled 500 small businesses to see what the weirdest excuses people used (or tried to use) in small businesses to try and get the day off, and they got some fairly creative responses back!

Among the excuses, the ten weirdest reasons people used to try and get the day off were:

  • My mum is vacuuming the stairs and I can’t get past
  • I don’t want to lose my parking space
  • My flatmates took the door handle off my door and I can’t get out
  • All my clothes are wet
  • I forgot to charge my phone and it died overnight, so it didn’t wake me up in the morning
  • I tripped upstairs and broke my foot
  • I accidentally drank some mouthwash
  • I have conjunctivitis (employee had sprayed deodorant in her eyes to make it look like she did)
  • The power has gone out and I need to wait for it to come back on
  • A pipe has burst (employee was stood next to a shower)

Excuses range from plausible to brazen.

Sean Mallon, CEO of Bizdaq, said:

“We work with a lot of small businesses on a daily basis, and we’ve certainly heard some strange and funny stories from owners about their staff. This gave us the idea to find out what the most outlandish excuses people had tried to use were, and we really weren’t expecting some of these responses!

“We were expecting excuses about people forgetting they were supposed to be in work that day, pets being ill or cars breaking down, but not that they didn’t want to lose a parking space or needing to wait for the power to come back on!

“Whilst it’s fun to see these weird excuses, there’s always going to be an impact on small businesses when someone doesn’t come in. Ringing in sick often means other people have to stay late, or someone else has to make up the hours. Of course when the excuses are as bad as some of these, the only answer is to come in because you’re obviously making it up!”


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