Kicking off

It all starts so well. You wait years for the moment to come, yes the odds are stacked against you, but this time will be different. Hours have been spent in the pub discussing strategy and you feel the team won’t let you down. Fast-forward a month and it soon becomes clear that the people you were relying on to bring you glory haven’t delivered. Running a business was never going to be that easy.


It all starts so well. You wait years for the moment to come, yes the odds are stacked against you, but this time will be different. Hours have been spent in the pub discussing strategy and you feel the team won’t let you down. Fast-forward a month and it soon becomes clear that the people you were relying on to bring you glory haven’t delivered. Running a business was never going to be that easy.

It all starts so well. You wait years for the moment to come, yes the odds are stacked against you, but this time will be different. Hours have been spent in the pub discussing strategy and you feel the team won’t let you down. Fast-forward a month and it soon becomes clear that the people you were relying on to bring you glory haven’t delivered. Running a business was never going to be that easy.

Coming to terms with the fact that staff don’t care as much about your business as you do can be hard. Especially when you’ve spent sleepness nights worrying about balance sheets only to find that their main concern is checking Facebook. But when it comes to World Cup-related time off this summer, it appears that small businesses aren’t doing enough to prevent employees slacking off.

As many as nine out of ten employers have no plans in place to help manage staff absence during the World Cup, found one recent poll, while another says that only three in ten have issued warnings regarding acceptable behaviour during the tournament.

But while having some plans in place is certainly a good idea, do SMEs really need to start whipping out the red card before the games even begin?

In our own poll, only 29 per cent of owner-managers say that the World Cup won’t be good for business, with as many as half believing it will actually have a positive impact. Despite the myriad cries of foul play, it seems small businesses are taking a rather more relaxed attitude than many HR and legal bodies.

Yes, the World Cup can be used as a great way to motivate staff and provide some group bonding, but it is also worth bearing in mind that the event only comes around once every four years.

In a climate where many employees are facing wage freezes, increasing job insecurity and yet another series of Britain’s Got Talent, cutting them some slack rather than laying down the law may be the more appropriate response.

And you never know, this could even be our year. 

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