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England v Denmark: HR expert on bosses, booze-ups and the beautiful game

ended 04. July 2021

So England are through to the Semis of the Euros - with their next match on Wednesday night against Denmark.

While we can't be certain of  the result, as Denmark are a step-up from the Ukraine, what we can be certain of is that a lot of people are going to be getting a tad tipsy (translate: absolutely plastered) on Wednesday night. To say it could be messy is a massive understatement.

A working week unlike any other….

So this week might not be like any other working week. There's likely to be a rush of staff booking Thursday off at short notice, and then there's how to deal with Thursday morning, when those people who do turn up at work have very sore heads.

HR Experts provides her views

Newspage sought the views of Southampton-based HR expert, Kate Underwood, of Kate Underwood HR, to advise bosses on how to approach the week ahead.

For Kate, the main thing is that companies communicate clearly with their staff starting Monday, try to be as flexible and as understanding as possible and, whisper it only, use the football as a way to strengthen the employer/employee relationship.

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"Weeks like the one ahead, with football fever in the air, can be a great time for companies to bond with their staff. "After all, with the economy where it is, there are going to be times ahead when they'll need their staff to work hard, so being flexible and understanding this week could pay real dividends further down the line. “Equally, companies need to make it clear that if people do just phone in sick on Thursday, there could be consequences, as you do have a business to run. “What’s most important is that companies are proactive and not reactive, and make sure they have open conversations as soon as possible so that staff know their expectations. "If someone has no holiday left but they come to you asking for the day off, they are at least being honest so that's a positive in itself. “There are a number of options in this scenario, from unpaid leave to giving them the chance to make up the time over the next week or two — or set targets for them to hit ahead of Thursday. “If lots of people ask for the day off on Thursday, but you can only allow one or two people time off, pull names out of a hat. That's generally the fairest way. "Employers certainly need to be careful about using sickdays as a way to lay staff off, perhaps ahead of furlough coming to an end. They could end up in seriously hot water, especially if there is no history of sickness and the employee has over two years service and/or a protected characteristic.”