The Cost of Fantasy Football and Other Odds and Ends

Paul Gumbiner is an executive search consultant specializing in the advertising industry. He writes an entertaining blog — View From Madison Avenue — that at times can make you believe Mad Men was a reality show.

He recently recounted Ten of the Worst Firings I Remember, which is a title that understates terminations so malicious they would make even Catbert wince. Here’s just one:

There was a president who was taken out to an elaborate dinner at The Four Seasons with his wife. The sumptuous meal was accompanied by an extraordinary and expensive wine.  The next morning he was fired and told that the dinner replaced severance (he had no contract).

Fantasy football

Fantasy footballIt’s called fantasy football because the teams are pretend, stocked with players who may not even be in the same league, let alone the same NFL team. But there’s no fantasy about the cost to productivity.

The outplacement firm of Challenger, Gray & Christmas figures the estimated 38.5 million US workers each suck up about an hour week during the NFL season, which begins next week. Multiplying that by an average hourly pay (courtesy of the Bureau of Labor Statistics) of $25.69 works out to almost $17 billion.

Since no one knows for sure how many workers manage their teams on company time, or even how many players there are, the numbers are themselves a bit of a fantasy. But if you wander around the office on a Monday morning, chances are you’ll catch at least someone checking up on their points, or having to figure out a replacement for an injured player.

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Remote worker hiring guide

hubstaff remote worker guideIf you’re having a hard time finding talent locally, and relocation is just too costly, you might consider remote workers. It won’t work for every job, but a surprising number can be handled by someone working across town or across the country just as easily — and often more productively and at a lower cost — than someone across the hall.

Not sure how to get started? Then check out this guide to remote work. Hubstaff, a time and attendance provider for remote staff, has covered all the essentials and then some in its five chapter guide. It covers setting up a team, hiring the workers, and advice on how to manage them. The big plus here is that it covers the negatives as well as the positives, so you’ll be able to make judgments about how to proceed.

John Zappe is the former editor of and contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor before transitioning to digital media. In 1994, he launched one of the  first newspaper sites. Before joining ERE Media , John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group where he developed and managed a team of developers, content producers and digital advertising and marketing specialists.

Today, John is a contract writer producing whitepapers, blog posts, thought leadership articles and marketing content and managing  social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing.His website is

In his spare time he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.