How to behave at the office Christmas party
Party time indeed (and the clip above is a party gone so wild!)
When I was editor, the invites during this time of the year abound. But I have been very selective in the parties I go to (I prioritize those that I made good connections with the PR and their client; and with those I need to connect with on behalf of the organization I am part of). On most occasions though, I end up not going because I am still tied up with desk duties.
Whenever I see my friends who are people managers also like me, we cannot help but discuss our woes over the teams we manage, and the things they do and not do during office Christmas parties.
I told my reporters before that it is OK to attend these parties, provided that:
- They have already submitted their stories for the day
- That there are no other pressers, events that are happening on the same date and time of the party they are attending to
- That it is OK to drink, but moderately (the last thing that I want to hear is that my reporter got involved in an altercation, drove under influence, sexually harassed (or harassed someone sexually), among other unpleasant happenings that could have been avoided in the first place)
- That we are not allowed to accept Christmas gifts worth half or more than half of our monthly salary (most media companies have such rule, but not strictly followed, except in the company I was business desk editor [consultant] for almost two years)
I also have heard really ludicrous stories of how employees misbehaved during Christmas parties, and how some also blew up the party budget with no appropriate justification for it.
So here are some tips on how to behave during Christmas parties:
- First things first: Unless you really have a good excuse (or you are the boss and can opt not to show up), attend, to recognize the blood, sweat, tears the organizers put in to make this party happen. Also thank them before you leave.
- Dress appropriately. It is still an official function after all. If you need to participate in a production number that requires a costume, make sure such is not too lewd for the general audience (as some of the attendees bring their young children with them). Inform your guest as well about the dress code.
- Do not get drunk. Enough said.
- Eat. Moderately also like drinking.
- Be social. That’s the point of attending the party, to socialize, to network, so be careful with your body language that tells others, “I’m bored, what am I doing here anyway?”
- Avoid gossiping. Zip that mouth. Again, this is an official function still. And the bosses are most likely in attendance and you might have no idea that they are within ear shot and hear you bad mouth him or her or your colleagues.
- Avoid flirting. Especially if under alcoholic influence. The last thing that you want to happen is be sued for sexual harassment or hurt someone’s feelings or proposed a marriage to a lady from another department you only met at that party.
- Do not post photos or videos that are, well, how lame the party is, your colleagues drinking or eating way too much, or those engaging in not-so-nice behavior.
- Be yourself. But do not make a fool of yourself. Again this is still an official function so behaving appropriately is still the key.
So be merry and enjoy the parties!
Email ma.lynda.corpuz[at]gmail.com for feedback.