HOUSTON -- The NCAA basketball tournament kicked off Thursday, and for the millions of bracketeers among us, "March Madness" is right.
So, the question every year is: what impact does all that ball have on business?
Well, on one hand...
An MSN survey from 2012 said 56% of all workers - that's about 81.5 million people - would spend at least an hour on-the-clock keeping up with the tournament. And the average U.S. wage is $26 an hour so the lost productivity could be upwards of $2 billion!
But on the other hand, a study this year says March Madness can also make work more fun.
That research says 75% of workers look forward to going to work more when they're in an office pool, and 39% say they became better friends with a coworker through their mutual love of brackets.
Meanwhile, a separate study from Britain estimates that happier workers are about 12% more productive...
So if everyone loses an hour of productivity, but they're 12% more productive in the other 7... Employers more or less break even.
Unless of course, broken brackets ruin that happiness, or if workers just call in sick to watch the games.
But hey, it's not like employers can stop the Madness even if they wanted to, right? That would be the biggest upset of them all!