The opposite of "absenteeism," it is when employees are so worried about and/or devoted to their jobs that they won't leave or take time off -- even when it is in their best interest.

Historical perspective: Staying late doesn’t mean you’re busy according to The Economist in 2019, presenteeism is the curse of the modern worker. While studies show that employee productivity declines steeply after about 50 hours a week, some managers still insist that workers stay chained to their desks. The bosses stay late, watching to see if their underlings are still there, while the underlings try to look busy, feeding a pointless cycle. If bosses do not like to go home before their underlings, and underlings fear leaving before their bosses, everyone is trapped. There are inevitably days when there just isn’t much to do and there’s no reason to stay, so you fake being hard at work: Leaving a jacket on your office chair, walking around purposefully with a clipboard, and sending out emails at odd hours are three of the best-known tricks.

Presenteeism is an artifact of the industrial era, when big, new machines required large numbers of workers to operate, requiring employees to clock in and out. But today, modern machinery, like smartphones and laptops, is portable, and work can be done at home as easily as in the office. Creativity is increasingly demanded of office workers as routine tasks get automated. To be productive you need presence of mind, not being present in the flesh.

NetLingo Classification: Online Business