How employers can manage March Madness workplace distractions
With March Madness ranking among one of the top workplace distractors this spring, employers are looking at how to keep disruptions to a minimum. March Madness and other online pools/games ranked third among all tech-related causes of work delays, with 30% of managers/HR reps citing them as a “major employee distractor, following text messaging and Facebook use.” Philippe Weiss, managing director of Seyfarth Shaw at Work, a legal compliance and consulting services company, offers these tips to help minimize the mayhem.
Bosses shouldn’t bet
If supervisors engage in a cash pool, they — and the company — may run afoul of gambling laws. And, in any case, they erode their ability to manage bracket-crazy employees that cross the line.
Brackets and bagels go together
It is often better to encourage employees to watch games in a designated breakroom — and during actual breaks — as opposed to them simply finding ways to do so on the sly. Designating “Bracket and Bagel” watch areas and setting-out some tempting food also lessens the chance that employees will leave work to catch part of a game in the local bar or restaurant.
Keep it cash free
For those workplaces absolutely committed to a March Madness pool, offer prizes of swag adorned with company logos. Transform that college pride into company pride.
Keep an ear open for complaints
Ensure that your managers are ready to effectively respond to any complaints of online or face-to-face trash talking (as well as any moral or religious objections to wagering) that may be raised by team members.