Whether you’re the CEO or the secretary, you don’t want to be ‘that’ employee at your company’s holiday party. You know the one. The paralegal who has one too many glasses of wine. The stockbroker who gets a little too flirty with the secretary. The journalist who lets a little too loose on the dance floor.
Office holiday parties can be plenty of fun and a great way to network and raise company morale. But they can also be a great way to tarnish your reputation among coworkers and even potentially get fired.
Here are some helpful tips if you’re hoping to ring in the New Year still employed:
1. DRESS APPROPRIATELY
If the invite doesn’t have a dress code, err on the side of caution. This is not the time to pull out that skimpy dress from your college days and your sky-high stilettos. Stick to a more conservative cocktail dress that doesn’t show too much skin. If you still want to stand out, do so with your accessories, with sequins, etc.
2. WATCH WHAT YOU DRINK AND EAT
This is especially true if there is an open bar or all-you-can-eat buffet. It can be tempting to overdo it since it’s free, but you don’t want to appear greedy or risk getting too drunk.
3. BRING A PLUS-ONE
Bringing a significant other or close friend can be a great way to keep yourself in check all night. It’s also nice having someone by your side all night so you’re never a wallflower standing all alone.
4. DON’T TALK BUSINESS ALL NIGHT
Holiday parties can be a great chance to network and lay the groundwork for future promotions, but they’re also supposed to be a time to relax and de-stress. Keep the majority of your conversations light, and use this as an opportunity to get to know your coworkers on a more personal level.
5. TRUST YOUR GUT
If you encounter any inappropriate behavior, advances, or hazing, don’t hesitate to tell HR about it the following day. Holiday parties are not an excuse for your coworkers to disrespect you. You deserve to feel safe and respected in your work environment at all times.
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