Tis the season of the company party, a time of celebration and appreciation for your employees and staff members, but what happens if that joyous celebration gets out of hand or someone has a few too many eggnogs and gets handsy? You’re on the hook to start 2017 with a new, expensive, employee lawsuit…. Don’t you wish you had your compliance air tight before the event or your employee handbook had the on-premise alcohol policy in place before the party?
Are your harassment and bullying policies up to date? Cause nothing says employee lawsuit more than when a little liquid courage that brings out the inner frat boy that has been dormant for the last 15 years and some inappropriate ethnic terms start to fly as Feliz Navidad comes on the speakers.
Overall company holiday parties go off without a hitch but every once in awhile they can be disastrous to your business or your career. So here are 7 things you should never do at the office holiday party.
1) Don’t Get Wasted: This is a social business event, keyword here is business. Your company may or may not have clients in attendance so it is best to keep the consumption to a minimum. So for you partiers, this means to keep to your pre-game amount of booze and not your blackout amount, as you would hate not remembering you got fired for cursing out your boss.
2) Don’t Dress Inappropriately: This is still an office event, even though it will normally take place in the evening, business or business casual attire will be appropriate instead of your Vegas clubbing attire.
3) Show Up: Yes that’s right, the party may be “optional” but your presence will be missed if you are not in attendance no matter how large your organization is. So do the right thing and put in some face time.
4) Get Off Your Phone: Nothing worse than walking into a room and seeing 10 people sitting silently with their faces buried in the screens. I know this will be very hard for you millennials but take the time to actually talk and get to know your co-workers instead of texting, tweeting and snap chatting about the party.
5) Prep Your Plus One: If you are bringing a spouse or a guest be sure to prep them on who they will be meeting and what topics are taboo to talk about, as their behavior will be a direct reflection on you.
6) Don’t Flirt: I don’t care what romantic comedy you watched the night before that planted the idea but your holiday party is not the place to hit on your boss or even worse, your boss’s spouse.
7) Just Don’t Make An Ass of Yourself: As simple as that, indulge but don’t over indulge. Dance but not like Elaine from Seinfeld. Be socially aware that someone is typically keeping an eye out and making mental notes.
So have fun and enjoy the holidays but make sure your HR practices and policies are current and you have a crisis management plan in place if the ish hits the fan this holiday season.