Nothing can destroy a personal or professional reputation like a holiday office party. Yes, these parties have a long history of employees coming up with what seemed like a good idea at the time. How do you want to be considered come Monday morning? Here are some sobering tips on how to tip back a cocktail or two while still maintaining your wits about you. Follow the Queen of Nightlife's advice and you will be invited back to next year's party!
10. Late Arrivals & Departures
Forget about being fashionably late, arrive on time. This is a work event not a social gala - hold back on your desire to keep people in suspense about whether you will show or not. DO NOT STAY LATE unless you are part of the clean up crew or you may find yourself singing a really bad Karaoke rendition of "Grandma (or your boss) got run over by a reindeer"!
Have fun and cut loose a little. Just keep in mind that break dancing & grinding should be left to the professionals. Unless your office party is in a strip club or hip hop venue you should leave your "fancy dance steps" at home.
8. The Buffet Table
Don't forget to mingle. Hanging out stuffing your face with "free food" gets you nowhere and spinach in your teeth will definitely ruin your smile. Eat something before you go so you can concentrate on the people instead of the calories.
7. First Dates
Is your office party for employees only? Do you really need a date? If guests are encouraged, choose with extreme caution. Invite someone you know will represent you in the best light possible. The holiday office party is no place for first, or last, dates!
6. Nightclub Clothing & Pick Up Lines
Unless it is a theme party, you already know better! This is not a nightclub people; it is your office. Flattery will get you nowhere if the boss's wife does not want to know how hot you think she is, and please display chest hair or cleavage only in tiny doses. Think festive! Color, sequins and sparkling conversation are what's called for.
5. Dirty Jokes & Four Letter Words
No matter how much you think people may laugh, dirty jokes and off-color comments are always offensive to someone, so avoid telling them. You never know where people are coming from and those laughs are not worth any of the unintentional consequences, including losing your job.
Talking behind someone's back will earn you nothing but disrespect. Always remember that the walls have ears and you may very well be bad mouthing someone's friend or closest ally.
3. The Broom Closet
Office parties are meant to celebrate the holidays. Trust me, no matter how strong your animal instincts are, no matter how much you believe you found true love or that no one will notice, this party is not the time or the place. True love can wait and there are no secrets! Workplace romances and one night stands should be avoided at all costs.
2. Alcohol & The Open Bar
Lampshades are only decorative on the lamp. If you want to be respected on a professional level you will not use this party as a drinking event. I suggest ordering non-alcoholic beverages, but regardless of which one you choose, keep it under three or you may regret it. Save the drinking for the Super Bowl Party you throw in January.
AND THE NUMBER ONE "GOOD IDEA" TO AVOID AT YOUR HOLIDAY OFFICE PARTY IS....
1. The Copy Machine
It's all fun and games till someone gets fired. If you and your coworkers photo copy your body parts it is not going to end well. Monday morning you want to return to work with your head held high - not doing the walk of shame into the boss's office. If nothing else - Trust me on the copy machine.