The day before his team took on Germany in their final group-stage game of the World Cup, United States soccer team manager Jurgen Klinsmann tweeted a cheerful request for bosses to let their employees have the day off. The note, officially sanctioned by the US Soccer Federation, swiftly went viral.
Support for the national side is one thing, but productivity losses during major sporting events are a major concern for employers. A much-quoted InsideView projection had the US economy losing US$121.7 million during the 2010 World Cup due to Americans’ viewing habits. This year’s tournament has drawn record numbers of viewers — and record numbers of sick days.