A different kind of break…the Office Christmas Party. Not less important than the breaks that Performetric application can recommend to you…
Because most of us work in an office where we spend most of our time working with those strange people that we call colleagues. But probably we spend more time with them than with our own family and yet we never really quite get to know who they are.
And for this reason, this kind of breaks, makes total sense to help colleagues, to feel a little closer, and get a bit empathic with each other (but not too much, please! Avoid that trap, that is kind of a classic).
It’s a “one night stand” kind of break, that if an HR professionals doesn’t prepare it quite right it can transform the moment in to a wall of shame.
An exaggerated approach of this moment, but quite an example of a Christmas party disaster is the movie Office Christmas Party.
The final advice for any employee is "Try as best as you can to head off bad behavior, because at the end of the day those few hours of fun can be career-ending.”
For an HR professional, in the first place accept our sincere condolences; in second place please check the best joke about the moment that you are probably living, here, and have quite a relaxing break (and don’t forget Tomatoes feelings!).
Then the advice is “be aware of potential problems, and have a plan to prevent misbehavior and to defuse the situation if misbehavior does occur”; "Play this just like any other chess game”; "Think three or four moves ahead” - And keep with you the emergency numbers (including the contact of the company's lawyer), because some survey’s suggest that not only low-employees misbehave, but also Managers.
Its important to remember them that “as much as you may want to have fun, you're still the boss and employees will see you that way."
"People forget that they're at a work event and engage in inappropriate behavior they would never engage in at the office that can lead to people being offended"
And Alcohol is the main factor in most of the cases. So think about limiting alcoholic beverages, the Society for Human Resources Management – SHRM – suggests that you, for example, “only provide alcohol through a ticket system so that people can only have a maximum of two drinks”
But wait there is a bit more…do not forget SOCIAL MEDIA HELL! If you do not raise awareness for this question, be prepared for shameful “company” photos.
No, we aren’t saying that you should not do an Office Christmas Party, but yes we agree that you should take in account the recommendation of SHRM, that we leave bellow:
Limit the hours - Begin the party in the afternoon rather than in the evening to discourage heavy drinking and have start and stop times. The zoo's holiday party starts at 5:30 p.m. and ends at 9:30 p.m.
Limit alcoholic beverages - If you are going to serve alcohol, give out drink tickets to minimize overindulgence and serve some sort of food. Encourage employees to take a cab or car service home. (Some companies will pay for the rides.) Consider having the party offsite and hiring bartenders who will refuse to serve an intoxicated person. Close the bar well before the event ends.
Do more than serve drinks - Schedule a program, such as employee recognition and entertainment, that continues after the bar closes.
Create a 'respect' memo - Remind employees, in writing, of the company's policies on harassment as well as the dress code.
Have a nice Office Christmas Party and a Happy Christmas (if you believe in Santa Claus)! 😄