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Suggested Answers to Cases > Case 16: Balance

Case 16: Balance

Lorraine’s absenteeism is getting out of hand and could be called chronic. Her firm could make a reasonable effort to help her learn how to do a better job of balancing home and career. Learning the proper balance could be accomplished through a series of discussions or in a seminar focused on the importance of attendance. Lorraine needs to see the negative impact of her sporadic absenteeism upon company productivity and co-worker relationships. Once this has been achieved, it would be advisable for Lorraine to identify what she can do to reduce her absenteeism.

When an employee “owns” the problem, he (or she) must do the problem solving. Accepting problem ownership will preserve self-esteem and maintain a healthy manager/employee relationship. With such an attitude, Lorraine and Mr. Hodges should have no trouble working out an action plan that everyone can live with as the problem is addressed. They also need to agree on a time period that will allow Lorraine to bring her absenteeism under control. To start with, she must begin by calling in to Mr. Hodges each and every time she needs to be absent. Being certain that she is truthful every time she gives a reason for her absence will also help Lorraine build both her credibility and her self-discipline, presuming that she values her job and wishes to remain employed there.


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