You’ve all had it happen to you. You’re sat/stood at your workstation or however/wherever you earn your crust and a colleague wanders in hugging a hot lemsip (or own brand nasty lemon/paracetamol drink) and starts complaining about how bad they feel and how they’ve struggled in although they could die at any point.
There are social norms to be gone through at this point and I aim to go thought them with you.
As you co-worker begins to remove their coat there are 2 courses of action open to you. Option 1; help them off with their coat and encourage them to sit down, after all they are not well. This is the incorrect thing to do. You MUST use option 2. Option 2, tie them back into their coat and start, gently but firmly, moving them towards the door. There is nothing worse then working with someone who has a cold.
It has been proved over and over again (citation needed) that the common cold is the most self indulgent of all the minor infections. Self-conscious coughing, sighing every 5 five minutes until someone asks the soon-to-be-dead “what’s wrong?” to which the reply is “oh, nothing”. The correct response from the asker of the initial enquirer is, and I’ve checked "The Times Book of Modern Manners” here, “Well shut the fuck up then!”, but in a nice supportive way.
If you are the person who has the cold and thinks that going in to work is an act of martyrdom on a level with Martin Luther King, it isn’t. It just makes you annoying. “But the boss will give me a hard time if I don’t go in” is often given as a reason for turning up by those who think inflicting their snot on others is acceptable. I can assure you that you work mates will give you harder time if you do, especially if you infect them.
There are many studies (look them up) that tell us the amount of money sickness costs British business ever year (my favourite studies are the ones that show that Nurses have a higher than average level of sickness. Of course they do. They are exposed to very infectious things every day; some of them have to stick. And think about it, would you want your nurse coughing and spluttering all over you? No, no you wouldn’t) but no one every does a study into how many work days, and therefore money, is lost because idiots have come to work with a cold and spread it about. There you go University of the Pointless Study (that gets us in the paper) you can have that idea for free. Now get into the PR company office or estate agents and start counting the number of snotty tissues left lying about. Did you know that there are 7 million cold viruses in 1ml of infected snot? Think about that when you cough on someone on the bus or someone coughs on you (although that is not a legally strong defence if you punch the cougher straight in their sickness spreading face.)
To summarise, if you have an infectious disease then stay the fuck at home! Watch daytime television, mope around your own home and leave the rest of us healthy people alone. Oh and get well soon xx