Surviving the office party is easy as long as you bring along your common sense and do everything moderately.
The office is throwing a party to celebrate the company’s success and to create a setting for staff members from various departments to get together. Some love it – free food, drinks and entertainment – and some hate it – no social skills and therefore dread mingling around.
Here are some great tips to survive the office party.
Be fashionably late
Don’t be the first to arrive. However, don’t walk in after the meal is served either. That will be extremely rude. If everyone is already there and the meal has not been served, mingle around. Use the time to catch up with colleagues or make some small talk with more important people of the company.
Wear appropriate attire
This is a corporate function with managers and other senior executives in attendance. So wearing the right attire is crucial. If you are
going straight from work, the office attire is just fine. Otherwise, casual evening wear is recommended.
Girls, anything with a plunging neckline, is see-through, ultra-tight, ultra-short and backless should be left in the closet for another evening. Looking like a trollop isn’t a good career advancement strategy.
It’s easy to pile up on food when there is a generous buffet spread. Don’t go overboard. Eat moderately. Use smaller plate. Don’t talk with the mouth full. Eating like a glutton sends a very negative image to bosses and colleagues.
Getting dead drunk at the office party will make you the talk of the office for weeks to come. So if there is a free flow of alcoholic beverages, go easy on them. Keep track of how many alcoholic drinks you’ve had. Try not to mix different drinks too as drinkers get tipsy faster when drinks are mixed. Remember to drink lots of plain water as well. Also, keep your right hand free of glass to shake hands.
Keep conversations casual
People attend office parties to have fun, not talk about work, unless your manager seems keen to talk about it. Also, avoid talking about sensitive issues such as politics and religions. People can easily get into heated arguments when exploring these issues and if your bosses don’t share your views and beliefs, you may be setting yourself up for trouble at work. Also, don’t use the office party to hassle your boss for a pay rise or promotion.
Watch out for roaming cameras
Just because it’s a party doesn’t mean you can pull silly stunts and get away with them. Making stupid faces, posing seductively, smooching publicly, grabbing a female colleague’s behind, shouting obscenities and showing rude gestures are strictly not recommended, even if they are only for fun. Do all these and be ready to see your festive faux-pas on YouTube, Facebook and MySpace! The bosses will definitely not be impressed.
While there is no law saying you cannot leave earlier, make your exit gracefully if you have to go sooner. If possible, wait until the speeches have been delivered and meal served. Then say “thank you” and “goodbye” to the party organizer and your bosses before making your way out.
Surviving the office bash is all about using common sense. Wearing appropriate attire, eating and drinking moderately, watching your manners and keeping conversations casual are just some practical tips to go through the evening successfully.