Top tips for Christmas party survival

Dec 08 2004 by Brian Amble Print This Article

The end of the year traditionally is a time for reflection, appraisals and bonuses. But all the year’s good work can be undone in a few dangerous hours during the Christmas party season.

According to recruitment firm Adecco, a bit of planning and common sense is all that's needed to be safe in the knowledge that come January, you will still have a job to return to.

Start on the right foot - Check the dress code, know where you are going and leave enough time to get there.

Make a friend - Make sure you have some conversation starters and stoppers in your back pocket, so you can get out there and mingle with new people.

Bad tab habits - The company may be laying on the drinks, but don’t start ordering rounds for the entire bar on the office tab without permission.

Wine and beer, oh dear - Don’t mix your drinks; remember everything catches up with you the following day. Also, eat something beforehand if a meal is not being provided.

Buffet etiquette - Don’t order food that is difficult to eat, especially in front of others.

Dealing with unwanted attention - Over a third of people meet their partners at work, but make sure you keep your distance from the over affectionate!

Beware the inappropriate joke - Everyone has a different sense of humour, consider your audience before reciting your thoughts.

Don’t do a ’Brent’ - Don’t over do it on the dance moves unless you truly are as gifted as Fred Astaire. Too many ’shimmies’ will come back to haunt you in the New Year.

Show me the way to go home - Train, taxi or bus, make sure you plan ahead to ensure you get home safely, or book a B&B for the night.

Hangover help - Rehydrate the ’morning after’. Get up and take a hot shower, eat something and get some fresh air.

As Adecco's Mark Bloxham points out: "Christmas parties are notorious for bringing out the worst in people. Guests often forget parties are an extension of the office environment and as such some basic guidelines should be followed if you want to make the right impression.

"That said, they are an excellent way to network with people within a company. Behave yourself, don’t talk shop too much and you will have a career wise end to a successful year."

So, if you were thinking of ’going for it’ this Christmas, remember that people have long memories- and ’infamy’ is not the best word to be associated with in the workplace.