Few events capture entertainment attention like the NCAA men’s basketball tournament each March. Sure, the Super Bowl is bigger. So are the Oscars… maybe. Not much else.
As I cheer on my George Mason University Patriots to win another CAA championship tonight, I’m reminded of just how much time is spent during workdays on NCAA brackets and checking scoreboards “for a minute”.
Business owners should decide now how to handle the next couple of weeks. Someone is going to want to use the copier to make paper copies of all those brackets. The same person will likely key them into a spreadsheet or a sports portal’s site that day so everyone goes home having paid.
There will be money collected – maybe $100, maybe $1000. Then you’ll grapple with the use of emailing the entire organization about the pool and more emails updating the results.
You may decide this is all good, clean fun, and a bonding experience.
Take the time anyway to make your expectations clear. If using the office photocopier or email systems are okay, say so. If you want people logging into a sports portal to do their picks so the betting is not associated with your firm, then say so. If you won’t even go that far, don’t try to block every portal. Simply send an email to your team and share your expectations with them.
Just like a performance review, nothing that happens during March Madness should surprise you or your team. And if you’re a team member reading this, go ask the HR department, or in a smaller company, an executive or owner. And just as certain as employees will be swept up by March Madness, rest assured that the IRS is happily reminding everyone that all gambling winnings should be declared as income.