The NCAA basketball playoffs are just starting to get to the really exciting part. The "Sweet Sixteen" tips off in just two days.

Every year, like clock work, we pass on the projected losses in employee productivity provided by business coaching consulting group, Challenger, Gray and Christmas.

In light of the dismal economy, CEO John Challenger, says his company decided to not crunch the numbers this year.

"In this economy, employees are disinclined to do anything that might put their jobs at higher risk than they already are. Meanwhile, employers have bigger issues to address than whether a few workers are using work time to fill out brackets or sneaking peeks at games online. Companies would be better served by allowing this minor distraction during these anxiety-producing times."

- John Challenger, CEO Challenger, Gray & Christmas

Here, here!

A couple of seasons ago I wrote the following article about all the nifty, techie ways to torpedo your employees from slacking on the job during March Madness.

I take it all back. I agree with John Challenger and commend his group's decision to let it go this year. I hope employers will let it go, too. These are tense times. Lighten up and let 'em watch a little B-ball.

To read the rest of Mr. Challenger's guest column that include some nice ideas how to use March Madness as a morale booster click here.

p.s. As far as I'm concerned, it's already April anway. My beloved Longhorns lost by five to Duke over the weekend. It was a squeaker, however. On to baseball, I say.