Andy and Sarah are Sick AGAIN?

January 21, 2010 ( – A new study finds employees named Andy or Sarah call in sick more than others.

According to the poll of 5,000 British workers and employers by the Viva entertainment channel, Steves are the next most likely males to call in sick to work, and Beckys are the next most likely females. The Telegraph reports that Paul, John, and Dave round out the top five for males, and Anne, Emma, and Debbie round out the top five for females.

The survey found the average employee has taken three days off work in the last 12 months due to illness, but admit they were well enough to make it in for two of those days, according to the news report.

When faking sick, more than a third say they would try to avoid confrontation by texting their bosses, a quarter would e-mail them, and one in 14 would Tweet them. Among those who would phone their bosses, 44% admit to speaking in a quieter, more feeble voice to ensure their bosses believe them.

Some workers are quite the actors, as almost a third exaggerate their symptoms and more than a fifth make a reference to the doctor to help legitimize their absences. One in twenty admit to crying on the phone to strengthen their case. In addition, more than third say they fake a willingness to work by telling their bosses they’ll try and make it in later if they feel better, and another 19% offer to work from home.

However, it isn’t illness that most employees use to get a day off. “The car wouldn’t start” emerged as the most popular excuse, cited by a fifth of respondents, according to The Telegraph. One in six have gone as far as lying about their children being ill as a reason to dodge work, and the same number have claimed a death in the family.

Why lie to get out of work? Three in 10 employees said they did because they “simply fancied a day off,” and one in five just wanted to stay in bed. More than a fifth were too drunk or hung over to do any work, while 15% disliked the weather outside or wanted a long weekend (see Flu Season Brings Out Workplace Hooky Players).