Ten Office Christmas Party Dos And Donts
Office Christmas Party season is almost upon us and all over the land HR folk are breaking into a sweat. This is the most perilous event of the year for the rulemakers and those who tend to break the rules of office etiquette. Sure, it’s a chance to let your hair down with colleagues, sing praises of the company and the wonderful people you work with and tell the boss and underlings what a great job they are doing.
Oh Sure! More likely it is a moment when you get drunk, tell the boss or colleagues what you really think of them, make a fool of yourself, and do things you later regret.
Stacks Law workplace expert Nathan Luke says the law offers no excuse for breaking workplace rules at a Christmas Party.
“Courts and work tribunals are littered with cases of office Christmas Party excess ending in sackings and compensation claims. Seek legal advice if you get into trouble.”
The rules of behaviour inside company premises apply equally to company organised events held outside the company premises. All those office rules against bullying and inappropriate comments or sexual behaviour still apply. Here are ten Office Christmas Party do’s and don’ts:
* Rule number 1: Don’t get drunk! You are bound to say or do something you later regret. Your office colleagues won’t think better of you for singing loud bawdy songs, swearing undying love or starting a fight. The boss certainly won’t.
* Beware of taking what you think is friendly flirting too far. Sexual harassment rules apply at the party just as much as in the office.
* Dress appropriately – this is still an office event.
* You can be sacked for stupid things you do at an office party. Courts won’t accept the excuse that it was a party, Christmas or otherwise.
* Don’t drink and post party pics online or to the twitterverse. That embarrassing pic of you doing handstands could end up going viral.
* Karaoke rarely impresses. Also it’s a good idea to eat before the party. Scoffing finger food isn’t a good look – and there’s the danger of dribble.
* No off-colour jokes – sexist comments, abuse, discrimination and humiliation are not funny.
* Don’t ask questions of co-workers that are too personal. The office barriers are still in place.
* Best to organise transport home for partygoers – employers have a duty of care at office functions.