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Is March Madness Interfering With Your Work Day?2 min read

Right now I have my left eye on my left computer screen, my center eye on my center screen and my right on the business screen (sort of). I don’t have an overseer boss, so no I have no need for eyes behind my head.  Yes, it is that crazy time of year called March Madness! Buzzer beaters, bad foul calls, overtime games, good calls, missed free throws, your wife sitting next to you on the couch watching the games (she won the bracket last year- UConn), even my kids are filling out three brackets at a time and wondering who will be the next Butler.  Is this normal? Well, if Obama can slack off from his important duties as the leader of the free world- then you can too. Who cares, it’s only three weeks.
But some people believe we are wasting corporate money with all this enthusiasm.  Outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas again estimates “employers could lose up to $1.9 billion in wages to the more than 60 million Americans who are in the office solely to watch games and devour bandwidth.” Who cares, it’s only three weeks. By the way, I don’t hear anyone complaining about all those coworkers absent on black Monday after the Super Bowl.
Yeah, I am as guilty as anyone else-wasting valuable work time chatting about the games, writing this article.  For example, I was just emailing a friend who is a Friar fan who was attempting to give me the shaft about my second team Dayton Flyers (my Syracuse team has some problems this year) as they get set tonight for an upset.  Yes, I did take the time to skillfully articulate why a number 11 team will unseat a number 6 team.  At the same time, I battled the same Friar fan in text messages regarding press articles about why the Friars are so good this year.
On the flipside, some companies are raking it in on advertising and product sales, but they don’t seem to mention the billions earned on the other side of the corporate ledger. Each time I have to open my Iphone to the NCAA Live App I must digest about 15 seconds of splashing cola from a particular soft drink manufacturer. I do find the commercial ad spots far funnier than last year, can you say “Louisville” (a Capital One spot).
I say to all you March Madness faithful, watch more games, stay up later in the evening, make excuses for what you are watching, hide the smart phone in the right spot at work or in bed, break the office rules on betting, but don’t watch and drive.  It’s only three short weeks of intense basketball, the type of nuttiness the NBA wish they had.