Brosi, P., & Gerpott, F. H. (2022). Stayed at home—But can't stop working despite being ill?! Guilt as a driver of presenteeism at work and home. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 1– 18.

We argue that the literature on presenteeism needs to consider that employees not only go to work despite being ill but also often work from home despite being ill, especially since the COVID-19 crisis enabled home-office work on a large scale. We label this phenomenon “workahomeism” and develop theory that shows its distinctness from traditional presenteeism through the evoked pattern of guilt. Across three studies (a vignette experiment, a critical incident study, and a within-person intervention study), we tested whether employees’ work-related reactions to illness (i.e., workahomeism, presenteeism, and resting at home) differ in terms of experienced and anticipated guilt. We found that when employees considered engaging in workahomeism, they anticipated feeling less guilty than when resting at home. However, when employees actually engaged in workahomeism, they felt as guilty or even more guilty than when resting at home. In contrast, employees’ anticipated guilt for presenteeism as compared to workahomeism changed from the same to more after the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis. Furthermore, we identify facets of guilt in response to workahomeism (i.e., guilt toward colleagues and about own health) and demonstrate that organizations can change guilt patterns by asking employees to reflect on the consequences of workahomeism and presenteeism.