Bosses bunk off to catch Olympics action

Mike Caridia, managing director of pa-assist.
Mike Caridia, managing director of pa-assist.

Britain’s sensational medal haul at the Beijing Olympics may have hit workplace performance as bosses sneak off to watch our success on TV - but a Kent business chief claims that firms will gain from Team GB's achievements.

A poll of more than 130 personal assistants and top secretaries - the people who ought to know - found that their senior managers are bunking off to catch a glimpse of the action during office hours.

According to the online survey by Kent-based pa-assist, which supports PAs, secretaries and other senior office workers, almost one in five bosses (18.2 per cent) have been doing this, with 7.6 per cent nipping off several times a day.

Most firms (59.8 per cent) surveyed allow access to news and sport websites from the company’s intranet and more than a quarter of bosses (25.8 per cent) have a television in their office. Six per cent of PAs believe the Olympics has affected workplace productivity.

It could have been worse as the survey also reveals that Britain’s bosses are a sports mad lot. More than a quarter (26.5 per cent) are "very keen" at playing sport and 78.8 per cent like watching sport at a venue or on television.

But Mike Caridia, managing director of pa-assist, believes that Team GB's success will rub off on business in the longer-term.

Mr Caridia, who lives in Biddenden, near Tenterden, admits that the Olympics could be taking an immediate toll on workplace productivity as bosses pop out to watch the latest British medal winners.

But he says Olympic passion could have a positive impact on business across the county and nation..

"PAs are well aware of when the boss is sneaking off to look at the sport, because they are the people who have to cover for them," he said. "And there’s no doubt it is causing some disruption.

"But overall the impact could be a good one because our successes at the Olympics have given everyone a tremendous boost and proved that the UK can compete at the highest level on the international stage - whether it is in sport or in business."

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