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'Loss In Productivity' At Work During March Madness Will Lead To 'Refreshed, Happier Workers,' CEO Says

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- It happens every year. Workplace productivity drops a little as March Madness begins. This year, employees might be doing even less work.

Sixteen games on Friday and even if you fall in Round 1, it's worth it.

"It's definitely very exciting that this is happening while I'm at school. I'm definitely very proud of that and excited to be here even with the precautions," one Drexel University student said.

Drexel's early exit was, unfortunately, expected. As is the games' viewership, which means as people work from home this year, more basketball and less business.

"We're expecting up to $13.8 billion is lost productivity could occur," Challenger, Gray & Christmas CEO John Challenger said.

According to Challenger, CEO of Challenger, Gray, and Christmas, an outplacement firm that calculates productivity loss, that would be about $500 million more than in 2019. Only with a smaller workforce.

And as you sit on your couch watching games, those meetings may take a backseat.

"I'm trying to follow four games because I want to see how my bracket's doing. Your attention can only be split so far," Challenger said. "We know that would be a loss in productivity."

But for the first tournament in two years, Challenger has advice for fellow bosses. We should be rallying around the NCAA Tournament this year, something to do with morale.

"That loss in productivity you'd get also includes a gain in more refreshed, happier workers with balance in their lives," Challenger said. "I wouldn't, as a boss, be too hard on people for watching these games."

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