Office Party Etiquette

3 December 2016

It's surprising, but true: People really do need reminders about how to behave appropriately when they mix business with pleasure. This is particularly the case if you're a new employee or a manager trying to put your best face forward at a holiday office party this year.

The key word in 'holiday office party' is office and you are still an ambassador of your company.

Here are 10 tips to remember during office parties to help you through the holiday season.

Read The Invitation For Clues:
A lot of the time, the easiest way to know the type of party you're attending is what's written on the invitation. Besides the basics, including date, location and time, an invitation should also note if you can bring a guest.

Dress To Impress:
The location and time of the party should indicate the dress code. You don't want to show too much skin or be blinged like a Christmas tree - find something in between. If you want to get in the holiday mode, red suspenders or ties for men and sparkly red belts or pumps for women.

Prepare Ahead:
Think of conversation topics before the party starts. Perhaps take note of your colleagues' loved ones or congratulating employees who won awards that year. The safest question to ask is about their holiday plans.

Respect The Privacy Of Your Colleagues:
In our tech-savvy world, almost every phone is equipped with at least a camera, if not a video camera. Some companies have banned employees from bringing their phones to the holiday party. You should always respect the privacy of your fellow employees and ask before you even take pictures of them.

Do "The Two Fridge" Test Before Posting Pictures:
We all remember our parents putting up our report cards and pictures on the fridge when we were kids. The "two fridge test" should be done any time you take a picture at your office party. Before you put photos on Facebook, consider this: Whatever you want to post, imagine putting it on your fridge at home and see if the pictures are appropriate if your kids walk by. The second fridge is at work. If your co-workers or boss walks by, is it still okay?

Drink, Dance And Sing In Moderation:
We still need to remember we are at an office party and everything should be done in moderation, especially if you are a manager or a new employee. Keep it PG-13!

Spread Gifts Around:
If you want to give a gift to your boss or employees, having an office-wide Secret Santa or buying your boss a gift as a group. Don't get too personal, unique gifts and presents can be a fun way of getting around this quandary.

Remember Your "Thank You's:"
The holidays are all about being thankful. Take the time to write a thank you note, not only to employers but whoever organized the celebration.

Don't Contemplate Attending:

Attendance should be mandatory. Your employer is putting together a celebration for recognizing employees. If you are a new employee, talk to other colleagues or your HR department to see what you can expect from holiday office parties.

Be Safe:
When it comes to alcohol, all employers and employees should be aware of their safety. Consider setting up taxi services with HR or the venue and a good way to ensure everyone gets home safely.

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