Study: Fantasy Football Is Not Sacking Productivity

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An estimated 20 million Americans play fantasy football, but managing online teams does not sap worker productivity, according to a new report.

Most respondents said fantasy football was not a distraction at work, according to the Challenger, Gray and Christmas survey.  Yet while two-thirds of respondents said they participate in fantasy football, 46% of employers said they either forbid or discourage updating teams at work. The authors write:

"Companies that not only allow workers to indulge in fantasy football, but actually encourage it by organizing a company league are likely to see significant benefits in morale as well as productivity," Challenger said. "In the long run, this may lead to increased employee retention."

Easy there, fellas.

Fantasy football is fun. And addictive. And I might or might not be on three teams with a smattering of friends and colleagues that I check on very briefly on Tuesday. But even on my most puckish days, I would never claim that the chance to play fantasy football with Jim Fallows and Daniel Indiviglio would be both productivity-enhancing and a factor in my decision to stay with the company.

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Derek Thompson is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he writes about economics, labor markets, and the entertainment business.

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