You’re Allowed to Watch the NCAA Tournament at Work — And Here’s the Proof


It’s OK. You don’t have to hide anymore.

There’s no need to pretend like you’re doing real work while you sneak a glimpse of March Madness on your laptop or Smartphone.

A new study just gave us the best news ever: bosses don’t care if we watch the games.

OfficeTeam, a staffing agency, asked 1,000 senior executives if employees should be allowed to watch the NCAA tournament at work.

The final results:

- 57% said it’s fine to watch the games in moderation

- 11% went even further and said the tourney is a ‘welcome distraction’

That means only 32% of Ebenezer Scrooges bosses think the NCAA tournament shouldn’t be permitted at work. Let’s be honest: bosses love March Madness too!

watch the ncaa tournament at work
Worried about getting caught watching the NCAA tournament at work? Don’t be! A new study says a majority of bosses don’t mind if you tune in for the games.

To recap: 68% of bosses are cool with tourney-watching. So you don’t need to mess around with any of the following:

- Watch the action from a phone buried in your lap

- Keep the NCAA video screen tucked away in the corner of your desktop

- Beg friends on Gchat for game updates


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The downside is…if you spend the next two days fixated on the NCAA opening rounds, your company is bound to lose productivity and, thus, revenue.

A report conducted by mood-killer another staffing agency Challenger Gray & Christmas found that businesses will lose a combined $134 million throughout the tournament. Thanks for the harsh reminder. That’s a ton of money over a three-week period.

Remember: bosses, for the most part, don’t mind if we watch the tourney so the lost revenue falls on them, right?

Still, it’s in everyone’s best interest to keep the company from bleeding too much cash. Here are a three ways to stay semi-productive and enjoy the games at the same time.

1. Use a break room as a central hub for game-watching

Centralize the action and make the tourney less of a distraction for co-workers who don’t aren’t interested (although those people should be appropriately shunned). March Madness is the greatest time of the year.

2. Take advantage of all the pauses

College basketball games go into timeout at regular intervals; whenever the game clock stops below 16, 12, 8 and 4 minutes (and a 20-minute halftime). So you’ll always have ample time to squeeze in some real work.

3. Only choose one or two games to watch — and skip the rest

For all the ways to see the tourney (i.e. online, TV) and for a list of games on Thursday and Friday, here’s a great resource from Mashable.

If you’re a college basketball novice, keep your eye on these potential upsets:


- (11) Bucknell vs. (6) Butler, 12:30 pm, TruTV

- (12) Oregon vs. (5) Oklahoma St., 4:30 pm, TNT


- (10) Cincinnati vs. (7) Creighton, 2:30 pm, CBS

- (15) Iona vs. (2) Ohio St., 7 pm, CBS

A 15-seed beating a 2-seed?? It’s happened before. In fact, it went down last year. Jump to 14:27 in the video. N-S-U! N-S-U!

Who do you think will win it all? Duke? Indiana? A team no one is thinking about?

Share your rock-solid pick below!


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© 2013, Danny Rubin


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