3 Things You Should Not Do at the Office Christmas Party

Have a Good Time Without Any Regrets the Morning After

Office Christmas Party Tips
Copyright: poznyakov / 123RF Stock Photo

Office parties can be a lot of fun because they allow people to interact in a non-work environment and see a different, more casual, fun side of the people they work with on a daily basis.  But office parties are also present a great opportunity for you to lend a wrong impression if the good time you are having makes other people uncomfortable. 

Here are three important tips to help you have a good time, and not regret it in the morning.

Don’t Get Drunk

Most of us already know that too much alcohol can lead to behavior you may regret in the morning, but even moderate amounts of alcohol decreases inhibitions and can reduce your ability to exercise good judgment.

People who get drunk at office parties may be having a good time themselves, but it makes everyone else around them uncomfortable.  Unfortunately, people can and will unfairly judge you based on one mistake – and getting drunk at an office party is a mistake.  You might not even drink on a regular basis, but get hammered at the office and people may still think you have a drinking problem, and your antics will certainly be talked about the next day.

Related: Business Liability For Serving Alcohol To Drunk Employees

If people keep telling you to lighten up, it’s a party -- have another drink, be prepared to politely decline.  In the long run, it would be better to be seen a party stick-in-the-mud than as the office lush.

  A good defense against drinks being offered is to simply say you are driving later and want to be sober.

Remember, even if other people at your party are falling down drunk, that is not a license for you to make the same mistake, but if you do end up drinking too much, try to mitigate the damage before it gets too far out of control:

  • Don’t drive home drunk.  Two wrongs don’t make a right – don’t drink and drive.  Call a cab or let someone else drive you home.
  • Leave the party early if you drank too much.  If you find yourself too tipsy, make an excuse and leave early – that is, leave before you say or do something regrettable, or start throwing up in the office bathroom.
  • Apologize the next work day for any "bad" behavior.  If you made a drinking mistake at an office party, man (or woman) up the next business day and apologize to your boss.  “Owning” your mistakes is important because typically, someone with a true drinking problem won’t admit it – the simple admission that you made a mistake may be enough to help stem office gossip about your “drinking problem.”

Don’t Have Sex at an Office Party

Just don’t. Even if you are seriously involved with someone at work, keep your sex life private, and at home. You have no place doing it on the conference room table for kicks, and even if no one catches you, it shows a lack of respect to your employer, and is risky, juvenile behavior, at best.

If you do make this mistake, and someone does catch you, all it takes is one cell phone video or picture to embarrass you and ruin your career.

Sex, even great sex, is not worth destroying your reputation and advancement opportunities at the office.

You may think you are being secretive, but office romances are rarely truly secret.  If you are sleeping with a coworker, boss, or someone else at work, you are kidding yourself if you think no one else knows, and risking public sex is a great way to ensure you validate all the gossip and whispers going on behind your back.

In addition to refraining from the “act” itself, you should also not flash anyone, make sexual gestures, gyrate sexually while dancing, make sexual innuendos, and don’t get crazy and photocopy your bum, boobs, or junk (men.)  You are attending an office party, not a 70s swinging bash.

Related: Surviving The Office Party

Don’t be a Debbie Downer or a Trash Talker

Don’t use a light, casual atmosphere like an office party as an opportunity to vent and promote your own ideas just because you can corner your boss.

Office parties are for celebrating, getting to know others on a more personal level, and are supposed to be fun.

Office parties are perks designed to reward employees and are not supposed to turn into meetings, work, or brain-storming sessions. If you really do come up with some new brilliant idea, jot it down and bring it up at a more appropriate time.

If you hate your job, your boss, clients, or the people you work with, stay home if you cannot attend with a good attitude. It is fine to stay home if you don't think you can have a good time celebrating, but it is not fine to ruin a good time for everyone else.

Related: 7 Office Holiday Party Gaffes to Avoid

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