Christmas Partys Dos, Don’ts.......and a few sneaky cheats!

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With Christmas Party season steadily approaching, the office party can be either the highlight of your professional social calendar or so daunting that you’d rather hide in the stationery room counting staples! The annual office blow out can boost your promotion prospects by mingling with the right people or can dash them in a second...if you’ve single handedly drained the punch bowl.

Whatever way you feel about it, and regardless of your office culture – casual or conservative – there is always an etiquette that should be observed. Our secret office agent went undercover and got these great tips straight from the HR Manager’s mouth, on how to have a great time but keep your dignity....and most importantly, your job!

Christmas DOs:

Do GO! – It may be your idea of party Hell but GO! You spend a quarter of your week with your colleagues in a work environment so it won’t kill you to spend a few hours with them socialising – hey you might even like it!  It’s an opportunity to mingle and to show your informal side.  Oh and it’s also great fun!

Do arrange transport –organise safe transport home in advance, especially if you’re having a tipple.  You might even be able to split a taxi bill with a colleague and it will give you a reason to depart at a respectable time before you make any risqué choices

Do know your limits – Pace yourself!  It might be a long evening and by the time you realise this you may have already consumed enough alcohol to sink a ship!  Know and stick to your limit, alternate between alcohol and water and, if it’s too late for that, then switch to soft drinks and finger food.  Find more info on alcohol consumption here.

Do mingle – make the most of the opportunity to socialise with colleagues you don’t usually see, you never know what you will discover and you might even open a few new career doors if you mingle with the right people!

Do watch your language – the office Christmas party is an extension of the workplace and should be treated as such.  Avoid saying things you wouldn’t say on a normal office day; a misplaced word here or there might end up ruffling a few feathers…including your own!

Do have fun! Don’t be a wall flower!  We promise, it’s not a trap by management to sort the professional wheat from the inappropriate chaff! The company has gone to expense to thank you for the year’s work – enjoy that!

Do put thought into your Secret Santa gift – you might think your present is absolutely hilarious....if it was for you, but is it worth taking the risk that you might insult the recipient? Think long and hard before you buy anything which might draw attention to sensitive issues...and no portable inflatable “items”

Christmas DON'TS:

Don’t drink and drive – Ever! We don’t need to tell you why this is not clever!

Don’t tell your boss any of the following: you hate them, you love them, you want to be them or that you fancy them. And don’t ask for a pay increase.  Ladies – no drunken references to Don Draper please!

Don’t be a suck up – Really want that promotion?  Well then leave your boss alone to enjoy their night. Don’t take advantage of a social situation to toady up to a decision maker, they’ll see right through you.

Don’t do something you’ll be ashamed of the next day – we all have that “friend” who’s disrobed and danced on furniture (don’t we?) who then was subsequently horrified on remembering...!  Streaking in the print room is NOT a competitive sport!

Don’t overstay your welcome – if the drink is taking effect, be mindful and heed the warning signs.  You’re best course of action is to call a cab before any late night mischief comes back to haunt you.

Don’t go nuts – this is a party, we know that but please observe common decency.  Ensure no-one ever sees your underwear or your screaming rendition of ACDCs Thunderstruck!  If you have any ideas of career advancement the emphasis is on office, not party.

Don’t photocopy parts of your body – That old Cliche???  After a few stiff ones, sitting on office machinery will seem like the best idea in the world.  Let us assure you – It’s not!

Do not take inappropriate images – smart phone, disposable or digital camera, all perfectly legit at an office party, until an inappropriate or just downright unfortunate pic goes viral.  You wouldn’t like it so don’t do it...particularly if its the MD doing their best Air Guitar performance!

Now you are equipped with office party etiquette, your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to ENJOY and Have FUN!