March Madness: 2012 NCAA Tourney a Work Hindrance?

Susan Solovic explains how basketball brackets can hurt office productivity.
5:21 | 03/15/12

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Transcript for March Madness: 2012 NCAA Tourney a Work Hindrance?
Is that higher than a year March Madness he -- what it may be costing you even if you didn't buy into that office pool. The annual hoopla over college hoops leads to a drop in productivity. ABC small business contributors -- -- -- solid negotiated shed some light on this issue very surprised tell us what -- -- the co-founder of it's your biz dot com. Susan great to see it today it's great to be -- Dan great to see you are so I mean honestly if you're not gonna put him at two dollars five dot whenever you get in the office pulled really. This is -- productivity for businesses March Madness. It says I tell you what it's a phenomenon 86% of workers say. They're gonna spend some time during the work day tracking those scores are watching games but here's what's alarming 11%. Say their -- -- About five hours of watching their favorite teams. During arrest of those weeks -- you know what you might as well not even show up -- but it's costing employers about a 175. Million dollars this week. In lost productivity now a bigger company. -- they can kind of absorb that a smaller company it really hurt. -- have -- -- essence of that series cash right -- and that's what that five dollar office pool that's right exactly actually got a list of some things that employers can do to help kind of control this. Problem release -- -- anyway let's go through some of the things you -- establishing guidelines. That's right to -- employee guidelines about your Internet usage not just for this week. But of course at all times -- are so many temptations on the web now they can distract employees but during this week you wanna make sure that you reinforce of those guidelines. What do you deem to be reasonable in the work force when it comes to that personal use. Now I think it's probably impossible to ban access to that March Madness craziness. But you know you need to reinforce your -- they should use moderation and by the way if your -- in your thinking about calling in sick one of these days. You might want to think again it's wiser to use a vacation day. It -- that's been Smart probably also for Super Bowl as well right isn't Monday like that most unproductive day of the year or something. In late Monday yeah of course the Monday after Thanksgiving Cyber Monday him this past Monday when we change to daylight savings time. Productivity drops so there are some hits are one of the thing you say is don't fight this but actually embrace it. That's right it can be a team and morale builder in your company saw a lot of businesses are actually like putting televisions and a break -- are common area. Setting out a few snacks and encouraging employees hey come on in here watch a little bit of the game -- go back to your office and do the work. In some companies they have actually made it so that you can not access. The Internet that streaming all of these games but you know what that really doesn't do anything because in all honesty can grab your mobile device and you can watch whatever you want to do. So they're using this opportunity to build a little camaraderie and saying OK if we can't fight it we're gonna join it right. The -- -- that's exactly right -- always a way around it that's -- next thing you say he's discouraged trash talking around the office and you know obviously that's -- they should be discouraged all year round but why is it's especially important during March Madness. Well let's face that you know depending on who you're rooting for are you think -- passionate conversation -- a little heated. Andy you know it's all good and funny if -- if everybody takes it in that spirit the problem is. People can really take it to heart and it might create problems between co workers going on. But in -- worst case scenario may be it feels like harassment to one of the employees and then your company is gonna get hit. With the harassment claim exposure to liability. So you really want to tone it down in the work. Place keep the team spirit in check July noted on that -- the other thing you talk about is the fact that technically office betting is illegal in most places -- -- -- And in around the brackets and collecting the five dollars on the -- so what do you read employees who simply object to that office -- altogether. Well that's a great question now first of all of the best of my knowledge it's illegal in every state to -- -- betting on college games except in the state of Nevada now if you're just doing a little -- out of your cubicle the chances of you getting. Caught very slim and it's just a misdemeanor if you did. The issue is for the company sponsored school so here you have a lot more risk. And in fact what the best way to handle it is to make it -- free entry. And then may be allow people -- -- win prizes you know whoever wins instead of winning money or something like that. In the other thing is you have to be very cognizant of the fact that there are people who have religious and ethical. Concerns about gambling and also you might have an employee and monuments that you're not even aware of it. -- possibly struggles with gambling addiction. You don't wanna be encouraging that kind of behavior -- got to let your employees know if somebody doesn't want to participate and no isn't no. All excellent points as we always come to you for reliance on -- solid ABC's small business contributors -- -- you so much enjoy March Madness well thanks -- its air.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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