As we enter the festivities of December, we think to ourselves….our office party is coming up soon. With the company holiday party right around the corner, it’s time to let loose and party with our fellow co-workers after a long year, right? Wrong.
Pick up any business etiquette article regarding holiday office parties, and all will have the same message: the cardinal rule to remember is, no matter how festive the occasion, it's still about business. Although it is enveloped in a social context, it’s still a business function, and proper protocol should be followed.
Eat, drink and be merry in moderation. Remember: you don’t want the Monday after the party to turn into an “I don’t remember” or “I can’t believe I said that” session with fellow co-workers. This venue is not the time or the place to show co-workers how many shots you can down in an hour. If you chose to drink, do so minimally and responsibly.
Dress appropriately for the occasion. Leave anything short, tight or revealing at home. Strutting your stuff should be left for a different occasion. Revealing clothes can alter a person’s perception of you as a competent professional.
Mingle with co-workers you may not interact with on a daily basis. Who knows, you may find out you have some things in common, and build a new relationship. And we all know how important building those relationships can be!
Thank the person(s) that coordinated the party. More than likely, they put a great deal of time and effort with the hopes that everyone would have a good time. Saying thank you is simply a nice gesture, and makes you stand out from the employees who don’t. The person on the receiving end feels appreciated for their efforts.
Following some of these guidelines will ensure a smooth, enjoyable evening.