You moon the wrong person at an office party and suddenly you’re not ‘professional’ anymore.
How come stupid things seem so smart while you are doing them?
Haven’t gone to your office Christmas party yet? Awaiting an office New Year’s Eve Party? Take some time to think about this unique “social” situation. Remember the operative word in office party is “office.” Susan Adams of Forbes Magazine stresses that these are professional functions and even though they are relaxed and designed to be fun, remember you still must be a professional. Listen as much as talk. And talk about safe topics like movies, books, hobbies – NEVER religion or politics.
Social media is always lurking and you are just a handy cell phone video away from being a u tube sensation, possibly an unemployed one. Some golden rules for holiday party etiquette are simply common sense and proper etiquette in any setting, but it doesn’t hurt to give some thought to these suggestions just in case the hustle bustle of the holidays have given you a brain fog.
- Don’t drink too much – in fact, don’t consume too much of anything; don’t hover over the bar or the buffet table. Stick to a two drink maximum. If you know you might have a problem, stay home.
- Be prepared for small talk – Have some topics in mind. Strike up conversations with people you don’t know.
- Keep your hands off and eyes up. Even if a female coworker is showing skin and possibly flirting, remember your sexual harassment training.
- Don’t skip the party – see exception in rule 1.
- Exit early. Make an appearance, keep it professional, navigate the party like a job.
A few of our favorite dos and don’t s for employees at holiday office parties (sourced from a Top 10 list courtesy of Fox Business)
Some of these are repeats of warnings to limit alcohol and the need to cultivate the art of appropriate small talk. See if you agree with them?
Do make proper introductions – prepare ahead and practice recalling names.
Don’t talk gossip, politics, or religion.
Do put away your phone. You don’t want to look distracted or bored.
Don’t bring gifts to bosses and managers, unless the group has gone in on one.
Do dress appropriately. Err on the side of being more formal.
Do say thank you. Seek out those responsible for planning the party and thank them for their efforts. Consider following up with a written note.
I’m guessing that you are remembering some hilarious faux pas, indiscretions, bloopers, misjudgments, and social blunders that you have witnessed at office holiday parties in the past. What great water cooler stories have come from those! I don’t know how much validity is found in magazine surveys , but “Men’s Health” recently reported that 44% of men admitted to “hooking up” at the office holiday party – SCARY. Did they provide people and company names in those surveys?
SO —THINK BEFORE YOU PARTY. EVERYONE WANTS THE HOLIDAY PARTY TO BE MEMORABLE BUT NO ONE WANTS TO BE THE REASON IT WAS.
Passing Out, Making Out, and More: Holiday Office Party Confidential 20/20 ABC News Video Clip: Holiday Party Confidential