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There is no such thing as “fashionably late” when it comes to arriving for work. You might think “better late than never” but your boss almost certainly feels differently.
Only one in 10 CFOs said they were OK with employees being late on condition their work and productivity weren’t affected according to an Accountemps survey.
The survey included responses from more than 2,200 CFOs from various companies in more than 20 of the largest US cities, and more than 1,000 workers who work in an office environment in the US.
Forty-seven percent of CFO respondents said coming in late on occasions wasn’t a problem unless it became a pattern. The rest (43%) believe workers should arrive on time so others can rely on them during set hours.
In a separate survey by Accountemps, it asked employees for their thoughts on being late.
More than half (58%) admitted to being occasionally late for work and 7% said they clocked in late daily.
Most workers (54%) aged 55 and over said they were never late to work, while 36% of employees aged 35 to 54 said the same and only 23% of respondents 18-34 said they were always on time. Productivity suffered for 43% of respondents as a result of a colleague being late for work.
These were some of the most creative excuses heard from financial executives on why a worker was late:
- I drove to my old job out of habit.
- I thought I was still on vacation.
- I had nothing to wear.
- I thought it was Saturday.
- My hair got caught in a fan.
- I super-glued my eye thinking it was a contact solution.
- Geese chased me on my way to the car.
- My cat delivered its litter of kittens.
- Someone spilled their coffee all over me on the way to work.
- I was stuck in an elevator with a kid that pushed the buttons for all the floors.
- A truck full of fish flipped over on the highway.
- My dog ate my car keys.
- I got locked in the gas station restroom and had to wait for someone to get me out.
“Perception is reality,” said Michael Steinitz, executive director for Accountemps, in a press statement.
“Right or wrong, showing up to work late can cause people to question your commitment.”
He also cautioned: “Just because you haven’t been reprimanded for arriving late doesn’t mean it’s gone unnoticed. Even if you’re staying longer and putting in the same hours as others, your manager will still remember if you don’t show up when you are supposed to.”