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What Not To Do at the Office Christmas Party

It's almost Christmas and many businesses around the country are gearing up for the holidays by having an epic office Christmas party. We've all had one and many of us have done or seen things we wish we hadn't, right? It's a time to let your hair down and get to know each other as people rather than colleagues, however there are still some things you might want to avoid doing to ensure that the New Year doesn't have a bad or frosty start...

Below are 5 office Christmas party, perhaps not-too-obvious, don'ts and the reasoning behind them. So, what should you be avoiding this year to stay off the boss's naughty list?

Do Not Have Your Party in Your Office

I know it's traditionally called an 'office' Christmas party, but that in no way means you should actually have it in the office itself. There are several practical reasons not to do this, such as protecting equipment from flying booze and mischievous people, but there are other reasons not to have your party here. For example, if Dave decides to have a boogie on the meeting room table, it's going to be hard to shake that thought every time you have a meeting from that day forward. Anything weird or bad that potentially does happen will be remembered more for the simple fact that it happened in a place you all go to every day.

Worse than this is if you share your office block with other businesses, anything you do won't just be remembered by your staff but potentially others in the building. Have your party in a mutual public setting (not someone's house, that's worse than using the office), that way everyone is more inclined to behave like a normal human being... for the most part. 

office xmas party

Image credit: Carlton Theatre Group via Flickr

Do Not Get Involved in Physical Activities

When I say physical activities, I mostly mean any activity that could cause you any harm or damage; but I also mean anything that involves getting up close and personal with others. When it comes to pain, everyone has their own tollerance. Many people believe these kinds of activity to be a great team building exercise, as it's a thrill... however you're always going to have one or two people who hate it or get quite hurt. For example, if you go paintballing and Dave decides it would be funny to shoot Debbie in the bum, you're going to have one angry worker (even if she does find it funny at first, the pain/bruise may change her mood later on).

On the flip side you have activities that aren't painful, but involve getting up close and personal with others... you may be a close group of people who don't mind, but because it is a 'work' activity you're not 100% safe from official complaints. There's nothing wrong with going for casual drinks or going for a meal out somewhere, it's only boring if you make it boring!


Image credit: Nic Redhead via Flickr

Do Not Get 'Naughty' Secret Santa Presents

Every office has one or two jokers who think it's a great idea to get something a little more mature for their Secret Santa present, but don't do it! Your office may have workers under the age of 18, who might tell their parents, plus not everyone has their mind in the gutter. You may think that Debbie would like fluffy handcuffs, but that could very well offend her... worse still she could make a complaint against you for being inappropriate.

It can also be embarrassing to open something like that in front of all your co-workers., it could be suggestive and change how she is seen by others. This can also then be followed by unwanted nicknames such as Officer or Chief Constable Debbie... as funny as this might sound, it's not worth getting fired over. Stick with quirky but fun presents, who doesn't like a good 'impossible' puzzle or Whoopie Cushion, eh?

xmas present

Image credit: Andreas Hartmann via Flickr

Do Not Pre-Drink if You're Going Out for Drinks

I'm not going to tell you not to drink, because it's the most common thing to do for an office party, but I will tell you to watch how much you're drinking. You can all get drunk if you like, but make sure you're all doing it together and keeping to the same rate/pace. You can't turn up for drinks already tipsy, because others will be 100% sober and you might say something they might not like or it could put them off the idea of drinking anything.

All turn up sober and make sure you're all getting merry equally, Dave might be able to handle his drink more than Debbie; so he should make sure he slows down his pace so that Debbie can catch up. At the same time everyone needs to make sure they know their limit and stop when they need to. If you or others get a little too far drunk, stop and have a pint of water and don't drink any more. Getting merry doesn't mean you need to get 100% wasted.


Image credit: JamesDPhotography via Flickr

Do Not Talk About Work Related Things

You will probably be told off once or twice for doing this, it's almost inevitable as you all of course work in the same place. Do, however, try your best not to talk about work during the party as you could all end up having a very lengthy discussion about something that doesn't need to happen for weeks. This also isn't going to be the best time to approach your boss about increasing your pay or talking about possible promotions... it is unfair to wait until your boss is tipsy or in a particularly cheerful mood to ask, as their judgement will be off.

They also won't be happy if you start making demands in the New Year based upon something they unknowingly agreed to at the office party. Talk about things in the news or interests you might all have, don't start talking about work (or your personal life, as it might be too personal for others).

And there we have it! Is there anything you would add to this list? If there is then please let us know by leaving a comment below or Tweeting us on Twitter or leaving a post on our Facebook wall. We hope you all have fantastic Christmas parties!

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