MARCH MADNESS IN THE OFFICE: can actually build camaraderie

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There’s already been a number of upsets, including the Wildcats loss today. But while the madness continues, so does your day job.

Studies show unproductive workers cost employers more than $13.3 billion during tournament time.

However, other studies and local companies say, it’s boosting their office morale.

Each year, employment firm Challenger, Gray and Christmas crunch the numbers on March Madness in the office.

By their calculations:

  • More than 97 million people will be glued to the TV for the games.
  • 75 million employees in the U.S. will be distracted by the tournament during work hours.
  • 72% of managers say recognizing the big dance in the office boosts morale. 

“We still get to watch the game and peek in on how our teams are doing and that allows for camaraderie,” said Chief Risk Officer at Federal Home Loan Bank in Topeka, Martin Schlossman.

The company has games on big screens in the conference room and snacks for employees.

“This adds just a little more fun to their day, and when you get to do work in a more fun atmosphere, you’re more likely to have more productivity,” FHL Bank, Maribel Manos, from human resources said. “You’re also going to do things more accurately because you’re building that camaraderie.”

“We work hard at the FHL Bank,” Schlossman said. “And so opportunities like this where we can take a few minutes out of our day to watch the games and have fun with one another and either root for or root against the team that’s playing its all in good nature and good fun.”

Not only do they have basketball games on for people to check in with, but they also have activities, not about the games.

“Our brackets are more about what’s your favorite food, what drink do you want at the cafe, what restaurants do you like?” Manos said. “So it allows having a lot of that camaraderie as to what’s important to everyone at that moment.”

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