Let’s face it, Christmas is a time when we tend to indulge and you can justify pretty much anything. Getting fat? F**k it, it’s December. Spent all your wages? F**k it, it’s December. Pissed at 8am? F**k it, it’s December.
Now while we’re all for letting loose and having a good time there is one event in particular where we at The Style Edit would advise exercising a little restraint…the office Christmas party.
Yes it’s a time to blow off steam with colleagues and reflect on the past year at work but you don’t want start 2019 with an epic case of hangxiety or, worse still, jobless.
The CIPD has previously found that 1 in 10 people know someone from their organisation who has either been disciplined or sacked for inappropriate behaviour at the Christmas do. Whilst having fun should be encouraged, it’s worth remembering this is still a work event and you need to be accountable for your actions.
So, how can you have a holly, jolly time without overstepping the mark or waking up the next morning lamenting, ‘oh, oh, oh’?
Learning and Development Manager at charity CABA, Laura Little has the following advice to avoid ending up on your boss’ naughty list.
1. Stay 2 drinks behind your boss (or the client) at ALL TIMES
When the drinks are flowing it can be easy to lose track of how many you’ve had. However, to avoid any reputational headaches, know your limits and don’t try to keep up. Always be in control and if you start to feel this slipping, drink water and fast – everyone’s tolerances are different so don’t feel the pressure to match others drink for drink. Alcohol causes a loss of inhibitions and affects our decision-making process, which is most likely to trigger something you’ll regret the next day. So if you are drinking alcohol, keep to a steady pace and know when to stop.
2. Don’t get loose lipped
We all like a gossip, especially after a mulled wine or three. However, remember that whilst you may be getting on with colleagues famously in that moment in time, it doesn’t mean a throwaway comment won’t come back to bite you. You never know about other relationships within a business or where loyalties lie. Keep to safe topics – after all, the Christmas party is meant to be fun, so don’t add any unnecessary drama into the mix.
3. Dress appropriately
There’s nothing worse than turning up to a room full of people and feeling out of place. A way to avoid this is to read the invite and sense check any wardrobe decisions beforehand with colleagues. Whilst the odd comedy outfit will add extra merriment, make sure it’s not going to fall flat with senior management
4. Put your phone away
Of course you want to document your fantastic night with your colleagues. However, don’t get too Instagram happy when you’ve had a few. It’s likely colleagues and acquaintances will have a cheeky profile stalk if they’re tagged in photos, so don’t let them see a steady stream of photos showing you enjoying the night a little too much. Take a few choice shots and then put your phone away. You’ll thank yourself in the morning.
5. Make sure you’re still on form the next day
The morning after the night before can end up being the moment when you regret not booking annual leave like some of your colleagues. But if you’re in work the next day it’s important to plan your day. Whilst employers might be more lenient, they’ll still expect you to work professionally and productively. Plan for meetings, making sure that anything important is scheduled for the afternoon when you’re likely to be more switched on.