Each workplace has cultural norms including expectations and commonalities. One example is in certain seasons or holidays productivity slows. Managers might reduce work expectations because they anticipate employee’s performance to change.

Productive employees anticipate performance changes because they are skilled managers of their behaviors. Performance is interdependent on six behaviors: physical, occupational, intellectual, spiritual, social, and emotional aspects. When behavior management is performance outcomes weaken through presenteeism and absenteeism.


The result of an employee showing up to work despite a condition like illness, injury, or anxiety is loss in productivity, workplace epidemics, poor health management, and exhaustion. A cultural norm of open and frequent manager-employee dialogue will reduce presenteeism’s effect on productivity.

In 2003 the total cost of presenteeism in the US was $150 billion per year. Pain and depression are two conditions raising costs above that of employee absences.

Self-advocacy is a skill categorized as an emotional behavior. Body knowledge advances one’s ability to apply and advocate health needs which significantly reduces the severity of illness. Sleep, diet, exercise, and time management are self-advocacy examples.

Intellectual behavior skill of creative problem-solving or design-thinking supports the ability to modify tasks or work spaces with health resources supporting unique ergonomic needs. Work task height and auditory stimulation are examples of modifying work tasks.


The numbers of days employee’s miss, arrive late or leave early from work site, effects business outcomes. Absenteeism is measured by calendar year and is commonly due to mental and physical health conditions. Obesity alone cost employers $506 per employee absent. Employees preparing to leave an employer are more frequently absent, too.

Moral standards establish through seeking purpose and meaningfulness. Set principals or adhering to beliefs is a spiritual behavior. We all have different personalities and cope with conflict in different ways. The workplace culture becomes a mirror of a leaders behavioral standards.

Andrew Wilkinson writes how he nailed success through a style of managing businesses like a machine. “I focused on what I loved, while they focused on what they loved. It was a win/win, and we grew as a result.” Wilkinson’s love standards included employee freedom of choice, including work settings and working hours.

Questions to Ask:
  1. What cultural norms improve your work performance?
  2. What is one moral standard that differs from your workplace culture?
  3. What is one way to self-advocate to improve performance?

Presenteeism and absenteeism effect performance outcomes. Self-advocacy and moral standards are two behavioral results directly effecting performance. Employers and employee’s who measure absenteeism and presenteeism through our performance assessment identify which behaviors are strengthening or weakening cultural norms.