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Attending Personal Appointments without Annoying Your Boss

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 16 Dec 2012 | comments*Discuss
Appointments Boss Annoying Dentists

In the main, companies accept that, occasionally, employees will need to go to attend appointments in work time.

It can be difficult to get an appointment that fits in with your work schedule, especially if you work long hours.

There will always, unfortunately, be emergency appointments that you just have to attend - a broken tooth needs a trip to the dentist or an unexpected medical situation needs a trip to a hospital or doctors.

Be as Reasonable as Possible

The thing that annoys your employers the most is when a perfectly avoidable appointment is set for 11am on a Tuesday and you tell them that you won't be in all morning. There is no need for your six-monthly dentist check up to be in the middle of the day, nor should you arrange a routine doctors appointment so it disrupts the week.

These appointments are known about well in advance, so if you want to make sure that when you do have a real emergency your employers are co-operative, make sure that whenever you can make an appointment outside of office hours, you do. You can book your dental check ups, haircuts or whatever plenty of time in advance.

So, assuming that, whenever possible, you have made sure to make non-urgent appointments for evenings and weekends, we ought to discuss what you need to do when you simply can't do what you need to do outside work time.

'Bookend' the Day

If your appointment cannot be made for evenings or weekends, the next best thing is to take the earliest or latest appointment possible. So, you may be able to get 9am or 5pm, allowing for only a half hour or so delay to your working day. You could offer to make up the time if you are going to be longer than half an hour, but as long as you keep such requirements to a minimum, your employers should respect the fact that you are only taking time off which is unavoidable.

What you can do is check the 'done thing' in your office with your colleagues before you make a work time appointment - some very large offices have their own bank branches, hairdressers or health centres and so would expect their staff to use them, whereas rural work places may be more understanding that employees would have to travel to appointments.

If you need regular appointments that you cannot guarantee will be at evenings, weekends or the beginning and end of the day, you should ask to speak to your manager and explain the situation. If your appointments are connected to pregnancy, there are strict employment laws to ensure that you are allowed the necessary time off. If it is not connected to pregnancy but you need these appointments - a health issue for example, then it would be advisable to talk to your manager and include them in your plans, they are more likely to be supportive if you are open and honest.

Keep it Brief

Regardless of the reason for your appointments and whether they are regular or irregular, please do not make the common mistake of going into loads of detail about your dental requirements, health check or whatever. Remember that, however relaxed and friendly your work place is, you and your colleagues are there to work - they don't want to know the ins and out of your examinations any more than you want to know about theirs.

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