Well-known sports journalist Kenny Mayne says it's time to move the Super Bowl to Saturday. I would have written about this yesterday, but figured you were all still too hungover from the big game to read about it. And that, is Mr. Mayne's point. It's the biggest sports day of the year. Even people who don't like football throw Super Bowl parties, and lots of people drink, and then find themselves hung over at work on Monday morning.
The non-drinkers are also affected. While they might not be hung over, they may still want to chew over details of the game with colleagues. This too affects productivity.
Mayne, an anchor at ESPN, has a website, Move the Big Game, where he explains his reasons for wanting to change the bowl to Saturday. His idea is a valid one. Why do we have the Super Bowl on Sunday? Because we always have? Because Sunday night football is a tradition? Because college games are typically Saturdays while the pros play on Sunday? Tradition is a hard thing to overcome, but I'm firmly on Mayne's side.
I'm all in favor of high productivity at work, but if you've been up late on a Sunday night, drinking, eating and cheering on your favorite team (or for Broncos fans, crawling under the table), you are not going to be in the best condition for work on Monday morning. Everyone is bound to be standing around talking about the game, or (let's be honest) the commercials. While this is fun, it's not exactly a dream for businesses.
Of course, even if you held the game on Friday night, some amount of conversation on Monday is going to be about the game. It's a huge American cultural event. It will be the topic of conversation on the first day back to work after the game, regardless of when the game is -- but moving the day may lessen the impact.
While a Saturday game would make for a better Monday work day, it's not likely to happen. To prepare yourself for next year, here's how to get your staff (and yourself) to maximize your productivity on Super Bowl Monday.
1. Accept that some work time will be devoted to the game. How does that serenity prayer go -- "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change"? Yep. You can't change that some of the day will be devoted to this topic. Take a deep breath.
2. Set aside some time for discussion. If you (as the boss) say, "Hey, let's all have lunch at 12:00 in the break room and we can watch the best commercials on Youtube and discuss the game!" then you've given everybody some time and you can gently nudge people back to work. If you're not the boss, and your buddies want to talk, say the same thing -- "Let's go to lunch and talk about this, but right now I have to get this done," and then go back to work.
3. Limit your alcohol. Of course, this is an individual thing. The boss would be out of line to tell people on Friday to watch their alcohol over the weekend, but, you as an individual should do just that. You can't be productive when you feel terrible. And as the boss? If your employees aren't functioning well, send them home and dock their sick or vacation days. You are paying them, so you should be able to expect good performance.