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Is March Madness Lowering Your Work Productivity?

March Madness is one of the most anticipated sports events of the year. I, for one, have become somewhat fed up with the NBA and appreciate college basketball way more. Of course, I am a Bulls fan and we are doing particularly well this year, but March Madness is a bit more entertaining. However, with the heightened excitement on the games it seems that there is a large drop in employee productivity at work.

With the majority of people staking bets on their brackets, employees will likely be paying a lot more attention to the sports section of the news than they normally would. In fact, Online College created an infographic outlining the loss of employee productivity due to March Madness.

According to the graphic, on average employees spend about 390 minutes on work each day and earn on average about $186 for each day they work. Interestingly, the average amount minutes spent on tracking and reviewing March Madness games is about 90 minutes. Online College computed this time loss to March Madness as an average loss of about $35 a day for companies. If you use this average for the estimated number of people currently working in the U.S., then within the first two days of March Madness roughly $175 million will be lost due to decreased productivity. When looked at in these terms, that is a lot of money lost by companies over a couple of basketball games.

Furthermore, the infographic reveals that 86 percent of workers intend to devote part of their working day to follow the games. Moreover, 56 percent of those people plan on dedicating at least on hour to March Madness at work within the first two days. Shockingly, 6 percent of workers plan on taking the first two days of the games off of work. In terms of productivity for work, this is not very great news. However, the games are a big part of a lot of people’s happiness and if they are going to watch them or delay their work to follow up on the games, then they’re going to do what they want to do.

In the interest of keeping your job though, Spark News highly suggests that following March Madness takes a backseat to what should be a higher priority: your job and career. Everyone browses the internet at work, it’s somewhat inevitable. But the time you spend doing this should be very minimal. After all, do you really want to lose your job and the way you feed yourself over a couple of basketball games? The answer is likely a big ‘no’. At least, it is for me.

Are you one of the people that plans on investing a lot of your work time to following the March Madness games? Did you flirt with the idea of taking off work to do so? Tell me about it.

SOURCE: Online College
IMAGE: Online College

Nicole Nicholson

Nicole is the Content Editor for Spark Hire and mainly writes for and edits the work for the Spark News blog. She graduated in 2010 with a BA in Journalism from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois. She has a passion for writing, editing, and pretty much anything to do with content. In her free time she frequents the Chicago music scene and writes reviews on shows for her own personal blog. Connect with Nicole and Spark Hire on Facebook and Twitter

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