The Gatehouse Blog

Return of the footie feel good factor

England expects. And so, it seems, do our employees…

HR Magazine reports today on new research from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) showing that many businesses are panicking about the impact the World Cup will have on employee productivity.

It is estimated that the big tournament could cost UK businesses up to £1bn in lost working hours, as employees skive off or call in sick (due no doubt to those Champagne-induced hangovers!)

According to the CMI, however, business leaders should look on the positive side and see the World Cup as a golden opportunity to re-engage employees. 

I couldn’t agree more.

I remember the feel good factor that was created by some employers back in 2002 and 2006, just by screening one or two of the day time matches and inviting employees along for a few hours. 

My own employer at the time, Ernst & Young, did exactly that and it worked wonders, helping break down barriers between teams and build a stronger sense of community.  Everyone agreed that for a reasonably small investment of time and money, the positive impact these little football-based get-togethers had was enormous. 

So, rather than worrying about absenteeism, why not turn this to your advantage by screening a few key matches, inviting people along on a first come, first served basis and laying on some nibbles and refreshments? 

Of course, if England performs well it could have a longer lasting impact on engagement levels!

Lee, Gatehouse

PS – sorry if you’re Scottish, Welsh or follow any other team apart from England!