The NCAA Tournament: Basketball Up, Productivity Down

By March 16, 2007General

With some great basketball getting under way yesterday, here’s a buzz-wrecking article from Erik Matuszewski of Bloomberg News noting that by the time the tournament comes to an end on April 2, it will have cost America’s employers some $1.2 billion in lost work and productivity.(Sorry, wasn’t paying attention, what was that….?) This includes $260 million in wages to unproductive workers — slightly more if games go into overtime. We figure these unproductive workers would be just sitting around popping Bubble Wrap or seeing how far they can hit the penguin anyway, so why not give them a little basketball to watch? No matter.

Already in day one there was some great basketball (that is if you’re not a Texas Tech or Stanford fan…) — or so we’ve been told. All over America, broadband pipes will be groaning under the strain of too many folks trying to access the games on their work computers, but certainly not here. According to a Challenger, Gray & Christmas survey, 23% of companies will have office pools, encourage their employees to wear their teams’ jerseys, and have TV’s in break rooms, etc. Only 6% of Grinches will block access to websites with games and info. Generally speaking, it’s the manufacturers who are the good guys (and gals) here, while it’s the service sector weenies who are the Grinches. Just a handy rule of thumb.

Here’s a link to a printable bracket so you can follow the Georgetown Hoyas all the way to Atlanta. And do try to pay attention at work, don’t let yourself slip in to non-productive status — unless it’s a really good game.