How Not to Embarrass Yourself at the Company Holiday Party

How Not to Embarrass Yourself at the Company Holiday Party

Good memories are easy to recall; bad memories are downright impossible to forget. Sure, last year’s office holiday party had great appetizers, but remember when Chris from accounting threw back one too many cocktails and told every soul in the room what he really thought about your boss? The rules and decorum of the workplace still apply at the company holiday party, even if you’re not on the clock or physically in the office. If you want to wake up the next morning with your job and your reputation intact, don’t be Chris from accounting. Here are five things NOT to do at this year’s holiday party:

  1. Drink too much
    Alcohol is usually the biggest culprit when it comes to embarrassing party behavior. You may have worked hard all year, but that’s not an excuse to use the holiday party as a hall pass to completely cut loose. Remember that having a cocktail or two while you mingle is one thing, slamming Heinekens and Jaeger bombs at the bar is another thing entirely.
  2. Disregard the dress code
    Yes, the holiday party is a special occasion and it’s acceptable to don something other than your traditional work wear. What’s not acceptable, however, is to show up flaunting your flashiest nightclub outfit – that means anything too tight, too short, too low-cut, or too anything for that matter is out the window. By the same token, save the board shorts and t-shirt for the beach – unless of course the holiday party is at the beach. Being underdressed in this situation is equally as embarrassing.
  3. Bring uninvited guests
    Getting turned away at the door for bringing uninvited guests takes the cake for most awkward. It’s not only unfair to put your boss in an uncomfortable situation, but if your uninvited guests get to stay, it’s also not fair to your colleagues who would have liked to bring guests with them as well. Speaking of guests, if your company is generous enough to allow you to bring one, remember that it’s your job to let them know these rules apply to them to.
  4. Flirt with a coworker
    Whether it’s a bout of liquid courage or the first time you’re seeing that cutie from reception outside of the office, put your flirting game on hold. This is a company-sponsored event, what may seem like innocent and harmless flirting, can be grounds for sexual harassment.
  5. Skip it all together
    Even if you don’t like your boss or co-workers (and can’t imagine spending your free time with them), skipping the holiday party without a good reason can reflect poorly on you. A holiday party is your company’s way of rewarding its employees, and attending – even if it’s just an hour or two – lets them know you’re committed. Plus, do you really want to be the one person from your department who didn’t show up?

This doesn’t mean you can’t have fun at your company holiday party this year, but remember to enjoy company functions tastefully and responsibly. Though Chris from accounting was lucky enough to keep his job, he’ll never be able to live down his drunken shenanigans. Remember to return to the office on Monday morning the same way you left on Friday.


Posted on December 9, 2016

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