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Blog - 12 Top Tips to Ensure your Christmas Party doesn’t leave you with a Major Headache!

12 Top Tips to Ensure your Christmas Party doesn’t leave you with a Major Headache!

Posted by Tracy Powley 17/11/15

Office PartyAs many of us start looking forward to the festive celebrations, HR Managers up and down the country will be dreading the minefield which is the office Christmas Party!

There is such a fine line between allowing people to “let their hair down a bit” and displaying behaviour that can be “inappropriate”  and even offensive. 

So how do you ensure everyone enjoys themselves, without anyone overstepping the mark?

The most important thing is to talk to the team; hold a discussion to outline what your expectations are of everyone during the party (even if you have a code of conduct or dignity at work policy, people often seem to think it excludes the Christmas bash!)

Here are our Top 12 tips to get you going...

  1. Know your limits when drinking alcohol and don’t over-do it
  2. Don't encourage colleagues and especially younger, less experienced team members to drink more
  3. Remind team members that unwanted physical attention is inappropriate and potentially harassment
  4. Don't raise conversations around issues that have caused concern in the team or with an individual – this is not the time or place
  5. Don't let any one person become the butt of jokes - share it around!
  6. Don't pick events which exclude some team members or could offend.  If you have concerns ask the person discreetly 
  7. Don't pick events which will stretch team member's budgets; pick something that everyone can afford, if people are paying themselves
  8. If some team members don't want to or can’t attend, don't tease them or make them feel isolated
  9. Don't have a team meeting as part of the event unless everyone in the team can attend; have it before the party starts
  10. Don't keep referring to what happened at the party for months afterwards – for example don’t keep harking back to incidents or using nicknames coined at the party, which people really may not want
  11. If someone does get drunk or misbehaves, deal with it appropriately and then move the team on...don't let it "pass into folklore"
  12. Have a good time...but not at anyone else’s expense!  

For more support in dealing with difficult or inappropriate behaviour at work or to see how we have helped other organisations resolve some tricky situations call us on 01903 732 782 or email us for a confidential chat.

Tracy Powley
Tracy Powley

The way we behave towards each other in the workplace has a direct impact on individual wellbeing, team performance and organisational results. This belief has underpinned our work at Focal Point for over 20 years and has never been more relevant. We are privileged to work with a huge variety of organisations wanting to get workplace behaviour and culture right - and to tackle the inappropriate behaviour that may get in the way of this. Supported by our fantastic team of facilitators and coaches, we are able to make a real difference to peoples’ lives as well as organisational performance. Having worked in both large businesses at management level and in 2 start ups at director level, I am able to combine hands on experience of growing and managing teams - and the associated challenges in creating the right culture - with over 20 years in learning and development. I hold the Certificate in Training Practice and am a member of CIPD. When I am not supporting clients or developing the Focal Point business, you will find me in a calming yoga class...

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