Millions of Americans say 'Game of Thrones' finale may impact job performance

A scene from Season 7 of HBO's "Game of Thrones." (Photo: HBO)

It's been years in the making, and millions of Americans aren't willing to risk spoilers by not watching the "Game of Thrones" finale when it airs on HBO Sunday.

An incredible one-third of employed adults across the nation said they plan to watch the event. If those numbers hold true, it would become one of the 10 most-watched series finales in television history - an even greater feat when you consider streaming and DVRs weren't an option for the other finales on that list.

Roughly 27.2 million Americans even say the conclusion could impact their job performance come Monday morning. That includes 10.7 million who plan to skip work outright, hence the decision by survey runners at The Workforce Institute at Kronos Incorporated to name the survey, "Absence is coming."

"What do we say to the God of Absence? Not today – or at least organizations can if they embrace, not avoid, cultural phenomenon like the Game of Thrones series finale," Joyce Maroney said in a statement. She's executive director of the Workforce Institute at Kronos. She recommends employers "empower employees with flexible schedules and the ability to request time off or swap shifts from anywhere, at any time so they can enjoy moments that matter in their lives, and don’t be shy to use pop culture common ground to build camaraderie with employees and managers. In fact, the ‘Absence is Coming’ survey also found that a third of employees (33 percent) use TV shows and events to build closer relationships with colleagues and supervisors. Open the lines of communication with your employees, use the right tools to simplify scheduling, and have a playbook to incorporate these events, when appropriate, into your engagement strategy."

As for who would American workers be most willing to bend-the-knee to as a real-life manager, 28 percent said Jon Snow. That was the largest response with 12 percent saying Tyrion Lannister and 9 percent choosing the Mother of Dragons, Daenerys Targaryen. Shockingly, two percent were apparently okay with being managed by fear as they chose Cersei Lannister.

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