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When ill
Thread poster: xxxIlan Rubin
xxxIlan Rubin  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 11:16
Russian to English
Jun 10

What is your strategy when you get ill? I've got a temperature, sore throat, etc. Out of action since yesterday, it may last several more days. I won't lose my clients but I face a mixture of losing some work and having a stressful pile of work waiting for me to get better and mounting up by the day.

How do you cope in such a situation?


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Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 09:16
English to Croatian
+ ...
Flu can slow you down... Jun 10

so tell your client, inform them even though you are doing your best to meet the deadline, sudden flu symptoms are slowing you down. Can you ask your doctor to write a note confirming all this, and email it to the client? Otherwise, not sure how the client would trust you in the darkness of the Internet and virtual communication where people can't even see each other.

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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 15:16
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
Be prepared for cruel agencies Jun 10

I cannot win my health issue. It is god's command.
However, I usually met with agencies who did not tolerate my illness.
I wrote about them in my LWA pages.
That is quite a bitter experience.

Dr. Soonthon Lupkitaro
Bangkok


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xxxIlan Rubin  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 11:16
Russian to English
TOPIC STARTER
How much do you work when ill? Jun 10

I don't have any issues with clients - I've narrowed my client base to two direct clients as they keep me occupied full-time and they won't be finding a replacement any time soon.

But what I had in mind is do you 1) shut up shop when ill, 2) try to do a moderate amount of work, or 3) do as much as possible? With the thought that the more work you do when ill the longer it takes to recover. That's the decision tree I'm facing now.


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 09:16
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Self-employed people are never ill! Jun 10

Your mind is surely playing tricks with you: self-employed people are never ill! Your symptoms must be the result of self-suggestion...

Now, seriously: I reckon that, for the long run and especially considering that we are not getting any younger, it could pay for you to grow a trusting relationship with a similarly qualified and experienced (and perhaps similarly aged) translator who works in your areas of expertise, with an understanding (or even an agreement) to support each other at these moments or if something serious happens (an accident that keeps you hospitalized for several days, serious family events, etc.), and with no interference with each other's clients once the emergency is over.

In my case, I am happy to have two excellent assistants with me in the office who are capable of showing muscle when I am down and take care of things.


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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:16
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
A combination Jun 10

Usually when I get the flu - which can really make one feel as if about ready to leave this world - I inform my clients and, if possible, do a little work, usually the most urgent project/s. My clients know me and my business attitude, so when I say I need to slow down because I am sick, then they know it's true.

Normally I get to the point of being able to work on the 2nd or 3rd day, thanks to some really good healing aids.

P. S. Get well soon!


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Elif Baykara  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 11:16
Member (2015)
German to Turkish
+ ...
+1 Jun 10

Thayenga wrote:

Usually when I get the flu - which can really make one feel as if about ready to leave this world - I inform my clients and, if possible, do a little work, usually the most urgent project/s. My clients know me and my business attitude, so when I say I need to slow down because I am sick, then they know it's true.

Normally I get to the point of being able to work on the 2nd or 3rd day, thanks to some really good healing aids.

P. S. Get well soon!


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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 08:16
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Well... Jun 10

I must say that I don’t get sick very often and I'm known to deliver quite often ahead of time. In over 30 years, I can’t recall ever delivering an assignment late, but I'm sure that if it ever did occur, it would be due to circumstances beyond my control and in this case my “back-office” (meaning my daughter and business associate) knows what to do. In over 30 years I had 4 days of bed rest because of back pain (herniated disc) plus 5 days in the hospital for surgical removal of thyroid nodules but it wasn’t a sudden event and I had all the time needed to organize myself. I haven't had a fever or flu in years. I suffer from retinal migraines but in general these last less than an hour and fortunately these episodes have been very sporadic… So, if I was ill and I could run the risk of delivering late because of that I would negotiate a new deadline explaining exactly why and as my client base is mostly made up of long-standing customers, I’m sure they would understand.

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Christel Zipfel  Identity Verified
Member (2004)
Italian to German
+ ...
Customers should trust us Jun 10

Lingua 5B wrote:

Can you ask your doctor to write a note confirming all this, and email it to the client? Otherwise, not sure how the client would trust you in the darkness of the Internet and virtual communication where people can't even see each other.


and certainly will, most of the times. If not, too bad for them!

In any case I would never ever send them a medical certificate - I am not their employee!


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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:16
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Yes Jun 10

Christel Zipfel wrote:

In any case I would never ever send them a medical certificate - I am not their employee!


Neither would I. We're equal business partners.


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Matthias Brombach  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:16
Member (2007)
English to German
+ ...
Once at the beginning of my career I had to raise the white flag ... Jun 10

... in the mid of a project (approx. 75% finished) because of a strong flue with fever and vomxxx. I was only able to send the (Dutch) agency (find out their name in my Blueboard records or contact me directly) the portions finished so far (still before deadline).
Nothing to say against the fact that they only accepted to invoice the portion I managed to finish, not at all, but the PM of course then reduced the remaining invoice by 25% because of all the "extra efforts" they supposedly had (with no proof provided for that).
I´m glad I don´t need to work for them anymore ...

[Edited at 2017-06-10 13:37 GMT]


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Tina Vonhof  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 01:16
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Made arrangements Jun 10

When I'm sick (rarely) or when I go on holiday, I have a trusted colleague to refer to and I put an automatic reply message on my email to notify my clients. Nevertheless, if I'm able to, I respond to some long-time clients myself with a brief note to make sure they got the message.

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Matthias Brombach  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:16
Member (2007)
English to German
+ ...
Best solution! Jun 10

Tina Vonhof wrote:

When I'm sick (rarely) or when I go on holiday, I have a trusted colleague to refer to


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Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:16
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Relax and get well first...then resume work Jun 10

If your illness has become such an impediment that you are posting about it here, then you should just relax, take care of yourself, and think about resuming work when you are at (or near) full strength.

Trying to work when you are sick is likely to not only prolong your illness, but to result in less-than-stellar productivity and performance.

Trying to be a hero is often more of a narcissistic trip than a justifiable response to reality.

(This is an attitude I parodied some four years ago in response to a poll question. Some colleagues didn't get the joke. See: http://www.proz.com/forum/poll_discussion/240247-poll_what_would_you_do_if_you_got_sick_while_working_on_a_project-page2.html#2072590)

As you make clear, neither you nor your clients face the Apocalypse if you don't meet a deadline.

So let your clients know you are sick, and relax and recover.



[Edited at 2017-06-10 15:08 GMT]


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Mario Chavez  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:16
English to Spanish
+ ...
When you're sick, you're sick Jun 10

I have worked through illness before, and I guess I've been lucky enough to be ill when I wasn't having much work, or else ill and working with a generous deadline.

Sometimes, when I'm ill or if I have to undergo surgery (like last August), I would inform my frequent customers in advance. One of them had to assign a project to someone else because I was unavailable, but resumed sending me assignments afterwards.

Thayenga: if you're referring to your own clients as being equal business partners, you're fortunate. Most times, at least in my experience, that equal partnership is wishful thinking. I'm not being bitter, just stating my particular facts in my situation.

Ilan: I hope you get well soon. My strategy is prophylactic: I get the flu shot every year, so I very rarely get down with influenza. Best of luck!


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