Why Fantasy Football works at work
If you’re reading this, you probably don’t need too much convincing about the appeal of fantasy football.
Whether it’s FPL, or DraftKings, the opportunity to pit your footballing instinct and knowledge against friends, family and the rest of the world is one to relish.
For many people, entering the world of fantasy sports management comes in the workplace. No office worth its salt doesn’t have a fantasy league populated by rival employees.
These leagues are an opportunity for a level playing field, where staff can take on their bosses and a chance to unite people across departments who might never usually have anything in common.
Running an work fantasy league is a great way to ensure everyone feels part of something and even those who have little interest in football can join in just to be part of something fun.
Most office fantasy league admins are the ones who absolutely love it. You know the type - Pete the Arsenal fan is desperate to show his workmates how much he knows about football and how, given the chance, he could do a better job than Arsene Wenger.
But, increasingly, businesses are making it a company policy to run a fantasy league every season, doing their utmost to encourage every employee gets involved.
Matt Humphries, director at Babel PR, said: “It encourages both competitiveness and collaboration as non-football fans are given covert tips on which players to select to beat the main protagonists at the top of the league.
“‘Inter-office rivalry of this type can only be a good thing. In a diverse work environment, discussions about which player is likely to be playing up front for Swansea this weekend or the extent of an injury to a Columbian defender most people have never heard of, is something everyone in the company can partake in and enjoy without controversy.”
Other companies go a step further, using their fantasy leagues to promote their business and reach out to new potential customers.
One example is Profit Accumulator. The UK’s biggest matched betting service has invited its 20,000-plus members to take part in a Fantasy Premier League contest for the for the past few seasons.
It has proved very popular and fostered the sense of community among the members, as well as allowing staff and customers to get to know each other better.
Prizes at the end of the season include free membership to the service but this season, the Nottingham-based company opened up the competition to non-members, making the league even more competitive and increasing the exposure of the business.
Profit Accumulator founder Sam Stoffel said: “Our fantasy league has been running for three seasons now and it’s fair to say it’s been a hit.
“You don’t have to be a football fan to make money from matched betting but a lot of our members do know their Premier League football inside out, so the league is quite competitive.
“This year, we made the decision to allow non-members to join. We shared our league code on Facebook and Twitter and the numbers are up significantly.
“It means the league is even tougher now and, from a business point of view, it makes a lot of sense as it increase the chances of reaching people who might not previously have known about us.”