Over the course of a week, several people show up at work with obvious covid symptoms. They either leave work because they are too sick or are sent home that same day. All test positive. Some other people have shown up at work only to reveal later that they have close family members (in the same house) with covid - they have been fully exposed.
You're the boss. What do you do?
A: Inform all employees imediately that under no circumstances is anyone to come into work if they have any covid symptoms without first showing a negative covid test - this is not the time to "power through" and prove how tough you are. Also, if any employee knows they have been exposed, i.e. in close contact with someone who has covid, they also must show a negative covid test before returning to work. Also, while you can't reveal the names of infected employees, you should inform any employees who may have been exposed to infected employees.
B. Do nothing. Don't want to get people stirred up and give them an excuse to lay out.
I would require all employees to get vaccinated as a condition of employment (If legal to do so, and it should be). After that, lost time for covid would be handled per policy like any other illness. Given that this would be a new policy, I would grant an extended severance package, 6 weeks or so. I'm sure there are logistical issues there, but in general that is how I would handle covid in a company I owned. As much as I do not believe the govt should, or could, mandate a vaccination, an employer can, and should.
companies I've worked for. Generally, a severance package is unheard of. There may be some special circumstances for a key employee who makes a planned, mutually agreed to exit on friendly terms, but generally speaking, no.
What kind of company is it? Is it a healthcare facility?
Are these employees vaccinated or not?
Is it possible for workers to be similarly productive working from home as in the office?
Regardless, it's definitely not B.
It is probably A, but if these are essential workers who wear personal protective equipment on the job then some will need to continue working as long as they don't have symptoms or a positive COVID test.