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How To Have Fun At A Holiday Office Party


The holidays are one of my favorite times of the year at the office.  Co-workers seem to be nicer and management tends to close the office earlier on Fridays and before a major holiday.  No other time of the year will you have this many paid days off where no one is in the office.  Along with that are the office parties!  I love a party.  Almost any kind of party – even office parties.

They usually have a DJ, music, libations and great food!  They are also a great way to loosen up and be more casual around those people you are typically more formal with.  You get to see people in a different element and quite frankly – you can learn a lot more about a person when they are comfortable and not worried about a deadline.  Just because it is a party doesn’t mean you just let totally loose though.  I mean, partying with your personal friends is very different than partying with folks in a company-sponsored event.  If your company is paying for the event, and alcohol is being served, you definitely want to remain somewhat on your P’s and Q’s.  Don’t get nervous and don’t think it has to be stuff – remember I stated earlier, I love office parties.  But there are some rules of the road you should be aware of so you don’t make a total fool of yourself and possibly make a career limiting move (CLM).

Here are some basic rules anyone should keep in mind while attending an office party affair:

ROTR #1:  Drink light.  On a normal day you might be able to drink a 12-pack of beer with no problem but an office event is NOT the time to show off.  Nothing worse than getting sloppy drunk at an office party.  While you may not be physically in the office, you are still around management and peers so keep it light.  You do not want to leave them with a bad perception of you.  If you more to drink  – go to an event after the office party with your personal crew and live it up.

ROTR #2:  Keep your hands to yourself.  Have fun and dance if you want to.  I personally like the Chicken Dance.  But please keep it clean and keep your hands to yourself.  The dance floor, at your company’s event, is not the time to start grinding with your date or co-worker or showing everyone how to TWERK.  Stay off your knees and no crazy behavior that will get you bounced right on outta here.  Remember, you have to return to work on Monday.  I remember seeing a couple get so drunk at our office party; they ended up crawling on their knees in between other people’s legs.  They ended up no longer working for the company two months later.  Also, refrain from being overly affectionate.  A hug for a greeting is fine.   Especially for men – no overly touching females on the shoulder, around the waist, etc.  It can be ill-perceived as “sexual harassment” when it was completely innocent.  If the other person is made to feel uncomfortable with unwelcomed attention – this could go way wrong.   Simply put – keep your hands to yourself.

ROTR #3:  Show your face.  I think many people skip office parties because they perceive their co-workers and bosses as boring.   It is good to show your face at an office event because the company spent time and money to create an event for the associates to enjoy.  Try and show up and get some free credit points.  J  If you aren’t comfortable enough coming alone – many companies allow you to bring at least one guest, bring a friend.  If no one at the party talks to you at least you have one companion to converse with.  Then skip out after about 1.5 hours or so.

ROTR #4:  Leave work at the office.  If you think your co-workers are boring, nothing is more boring than talking about shop at an office party.  Sure, some mentions may come up, but the event is not meant to be an after-five office meeting.  Loosen up, enjoy yourself and leave the shop talk for Monday morning.

ROTR #5:  Start up a conversation with someone you normally don’t talk to.  What a better way to strike up a conversation with that office person you always wanted to meet or talk to.  Saunter on over and initiate a conversation.  That is the perfect setting to network and build relationships outside of your department or division.  This is a social event after all.

ROTR #6:  Keep it clean.  Keep the dirty, offensive, sexist, racist and religious jokes out of the office party – PERIOD!

ROTR #7:  Participate in the event activities.  If there is a contest or a dance off – jump in and participate.  Enjoy the moment.  Nothing like being seen as a good sport by your peers and management.  You might actually have fun.

If you follow these rules of thumb you may enjoy holiday office parties as much as I do.

Do you like to participate in company evens?  Leave us a comment telling us why or why not.

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