As the temperatures warm, so do the hearts of college basketball fans across the country. Remember back in November, those “non-conference schedules” where powerhouse college basketball teams were playing teams who would have probably been better off putting their mascot in the game than the first player on their team that comes off the bench. All those non-competitive games that bored everyone to death? Well, that time of year is over everyone. Instead the madness has arrived, in the form of March Madness.
Employers fear this time of year, because they know that productivity in the office will drop. Some will try to keep it from happening by making office policies forbidding visiting websites to view scores and having radios at your desk. Others will go go to extremes such as purchasing software to block employees from visiting those websites that have score updates of the NCAA basketball tournament games. Of course these companies will find many more of their employees leaving the office for lunch during the first two days of March Madness as well. The winners of those decisions by companies to limit their employees access to the scores are the nearby restaurants that have televisions to watch while you eat lunch. Restaurants that are normally extremely slow for weekday lunches will see much heavier business if they have a television in the restaurant turned to the NCAA basketball tournament.
Employees will be walking around crunching numbers in their head all day. No, these aren’t the numbers that you will see on financial statements for the company, or on expense reports they have to submit. Afterall, not many financial reports or expense reports have calculations that can help you decide which of the number twelve seeds will be the upset special over a number five seed this year. Actually, in recent years the more important question is “Which #5 seed will actually defeat a #12 seed?”. These are the questions that will be filling everyone’s mind as the tournament begins.
Las Vegas sports books will see some of their busiest days of the year other than the Super Bowl. The other winners this time of year might be the office supply stores that sell printer toner though, that’s what happens when everyone is trying to print out all their brackets and doing them over and over again until they feel they have the correct sheet for the pool they enter. Of course these pools are “for entertainment purposes only”, right?
In the end, there will be many employers and spouses wondering where their employees and significant others are during the four week period known as March Madness. Sure, they might be there physically, but their minds will be off in “bracketville”. How in the world can things like taking out the trash, making dinner, completing expense reports, picking up your boss at the airport and items such as personal hygiene compete with March Madness? In the end, this is why it earned the title “Madness” indeed.