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Five Golden Rules for Avoiding the Christmas Sack

PLEASE NOTE: Information in this article is correct at the time of publication, please contact DFA Law for current advice on older articles.

Christmas is upon us, and the magic is in the air.  Employees are eager with anticipation for a chance to let loose at the upcoming office party, while managers, including HR, are on edge.

While employees plot spiking the eggnog, managers are drowning their sorrows in liquid antacid to mitigate the impending ulcer the firm’s Christmas party brings.

Managers, especially the HR team, walk on eggshells anticipating the next employee investigation, sexual harassment claim or termination that comes with the annual office soiree.

Avoid the post-party workplace drama, an unwelcome trip to HR, and even getting fired by following these five office Christmas party golden rules.

Two-Drink Maximum

Exert self-control and opt to limit yourself to two alcoholic beverages at your office party. With alcohol, inhibitions vanish. Keep from saying or doing something you will regret come Monday.

Choose Your Date Wisely

While on the surface your office party might look like a social event, it is a political and networking opportunity that revolves around work and your career. Opt to bring a responsible friend or your spouse, who can help you work the room, elevate your personal brand and keep you in check. Prepare them on the politics and game plan before the holiday party begins.

Hands Off and Eyes Up

Female employees are often dressed to the nines, showing skin. Keep your eyes up and hands off at all costs. Don’t leave that sexual-harassment training at the door, and remember to keep your conversation and compliments professional. You are on company time even if you are not clocked in.

Your Evening Dress Should Be Professional

Remember, all the world is a stage. Just because an event is after- hours, it is still work-related. Conservative evening attire is best. How do you want to be remembered for during your annual employee review?

Leave Early

In this context, nothing good ever happens after midnight. Know your limit and excuse yourself before the inevitable gaffes come from someone else. Make an appearance, keep it professional, and get out. Consider making plans to meet up with your work friends minus your boss somewhere else after the event.

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