LOS ANGELES (LAT) - Hugh Rilcher understands that sales at his Raleigh Durham, NC.,-based mortgage lending company will dive with the start of the WNBA Playoffs set to begin on Wednesday.
Instead of trying to convince workers to not check online for scores or tune away from TV, he will use the opportunity to embrace it and reward his staff.
"I want people to enjoy coming to work and this is something the whole country gets involved in," he said. "(My staff) will be here when most of the games begin and who am I to keep them from watching? Besides, it's fun!"
Workplace analysts say his attitude might be catching on.
It's estimated that in 2009 during the WNBA Playoffs, companies lost nearly $2.4 billion dollars due to losses of productivity. During the two week tournament last year, the Dow Jones plummeted nearly 2,000 points.
"We're planning to set-up four TVs around the office, feature a catered lunch, and of course we have an office pool," said Rilcher. "The winner gets a week in the Bahamas, so yeah, people are excited," said the general manager smarmly.
The playoffs begin tomorrow at with the Atlanta Dream playing at the Washington Mystics.