What would be your out-of-office message for a medical leave? Please share an example.
To help you know what out-of-office message is proper when you are on medical leave, we asked CEOs and business leaders this question for their best advice. From referring customers to other people to adding something witty, there are several ways to frame your out-of-office messages to properly communicate your absence on medical leave.
Here Are Nine Tips For Out-Of-Office Messages For Medical Leave:
- Refer Customers To Other People
- State Honestly You’re on Medical Leave
- Leave a Short Message That is Actionable and To The Point
- Avoid Disclosing Medical Information
- Keep Email Message Short and Simple
- State You’re Taking Time To Recover and Get Back On Board
- Communicate Your Absence Without Revealing Further Details
- Detail Reassigned Responsibilities
- Add Something Memorable or Witty
Refer Customers To Other People
If you’re out on medical leave, you’re probably dealing with a private issue, and there’s no need at all to explain it (or that you’re on medical leave at all). Just give recipients the information they need to get what they’re looking for — and do it in an upbeat way. Something along the lines of: “Thanks for reaching out! I’m sorry to miss you, but I’m actually going to be out of the office until [date], and I may be unable to respond to emails. In the meantime, [Other person] is around and they can help you with anything you need. I look forward to catching up when I get back.”
Elliott Brown, OnPay
State Honestly You’re on Medical Leave
Many people try to get tricky with their out-of-the-office messages, but when it comes to an absence based on medical leave, honesty is always the best policy. Since the pandemic, people have become much more understanding when it comes to medical leave, as not only are they more sensitive based on COVID, but other ailments as well.
Leaving a message that states,
“Thank you for calling, currently I am out of the office on medical leave, and hope to be back soon, but I will be checking my messages.” is not only being upfront, but lets them know that you want to get back, and that you care about their questions. Being polite, direct, professional, and honest, checks all the boxes, and is certainly a respectable out-of-office on medical leave message.
Anthony Puopolo, Rex MD
Leave a Short Message That is Actionable and To The Point
The three ingredients to include in your out-of-office message (verbally and through automated email responses) should be short, actionable and to the point:
1. Inform of your absence without giving too many specifics of why/what is the reason for the leave.
2. Your level of engagement while you’re out (are you working on a limited capacity? When will you be checking emails again?).
3. Who to contact to help the client in your place.
This keeps the flow of business moving for the client without disruption or lack of miscommunication on your part.
Jason Reposa, Good Feels
Avoid Disclosing Medical Information
To Whom it May Concern:
I will be out of the office and not checking email from MM/DD/YY – MM/DD/YY. During that time, Dr. Hypothetical Name will be assisting my patients. All of my emails will be automatically forwarded to Dr. Name’s assistant, Someone Else, who will respond in a timely manner. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 911.
Dr. David Culpeppe
Notice I make no reference to the medical nature of the leave, as I am a firm believer in the privacy of medical information.
David Culpepper, LifeMD
Keep Email Message Short and Simple
If you are going on medical leave, it is important to let your colleagues and clients know in advance. One way to do this is to set up an out-of-office message on your email account. Here is an example of what you might say:
I will be out of the office on a medical leave starting (date) and returning (date). If you need assistance during this time, please contact (name) at (email address). Thank you for your understanding.
Brian Meiggs, My Millennial Guide
State You’re Taking Time to Recover and Get Back On Board
I’ll be out of the office from [start date] until [end date] because of health issues. I need some time to recover and come back to work at full strength. And at full speed– it may take me longer than usual to reply to the emails these days. In case of urgent need, please call me on my cell [number]. Thanks for understanding, [name].”
Agata Szczepanek, MyPerfectResume
Communicate Your Absence Without Revealing Further Details
Taking medical leave requires proper communication to convey expectations for work. Explicitly mentioning a medical leave is nothing to shy away from. We are living creatures and not robots, after all! Including a projected return date is a good idea no matter the absence length. A message I use for medical leave:
“I’m out of office at the moment due to medical leave, but there is no need for concern. I plan to return healthy and strong as ever by (target date). In the meantime, please direct questions and concerns to ______. Thank you!”
However, some people are sensitive about their medical needs and privacy, and they aren’t comfortable sharing information about their leave. A nice message that communicates an absence without revealing further details could look like this:
“I am currently out of office and will get back to the matter at hand as soon as I am able. I expect to return by (target date). Please consult _____ for any urgent needs or questions. Thank you!”
Thomas Yuan, Sanebox
Detail Reassigned Responsibilities
A medical leave message is most effective if it details the reassignment of different tasks you were in charge of in a project. This type of message encourages organizational continuity even in your absence thus serving as an effective communication tool. A sample message would be:
“Hi team, this is to inform everyone that I will be on medical leave for up to X days. In the meantime, I have reassigned my tasks to each member proportionately to ensure we deliver on the project deadlines. I will follow up on all details once I resume work.”
Ivy Bosibori, USBadCreditLoans
Add Something Memorable or Witty
You don’t have to let everyone know about the reason for your leave of absence. Simply inform your business associates about the time frame in which you’ll be gone and who will be assisting them during that time. Then reward them for reading with something memorable or witty. For instance:
“Dear Business Associate,
A quick note to let you know that I’ll be out of office until MMM/DD/YY. A pressing matter needs my attention but I leave you in the capable hands of my TITLE, NAME.
NAME is fully up to date on all of our accounts and can answer any and all questions or concerns. He has access to my email account and will be returning emails at this address. In fact, now that I think about it, I might have to fire him when I return because he knows too much! Have a fantastic summer and I’ll reach out as soon as I return in August.
All the best,
Michael Van, Furnishr