It’s that time of year again – holiday party season is upon us. After a long year of hard work, the holiday party offers a great opportunity to unwind and celebrate a year of success with your colleagues.
Our list of do’s and don’ts can help you avoid unnecessary career blunders and even boost your career at this year’s event:
- Do have fun! Holiday parties are thrown to have a good time and reflect on your hard work over the past year. You absolutely should eat, drink (don’t overdo it!) and have a great time.
- Do remember that it’s a work event. While you should have a nice time, remember that the holiday party is still a professional, work-sponsored event. Your dress and behavior should be work appropriate, and you should conduct yourself as if your boss is watching your every move (because he/she probably is!).
- Don’t skip the party. Unless you have another obligation that’s impossible to reschedule, you should at least make an appearance at your work holiday party. Skipping the party could send the wrong message to your boss and imply that you aren’t invested in the company. Stay at least a half hour or so, and be sure to say a few “hellos” to key individuals before you go.
- Don’t be “all business.” While you should conduct yourself professionally at all times, don’t be that person who sits around talking about your to-do list or work projects at the holiday party! You don’t want to be known as the “Debbie Downer” of your office – remember, you’re there to celebrate!
- Do think about your career. While you shouldn’t spend your time focusing on business talk, it absolutely makes sense to mingle and introduce yourself to the “major players” in your organization. It’s a great opportunity to begin new relationships or strengthen prior ones. Just keep it to either a short introduction (letting them take the lead and ask questions) or a “how have you been” to people you don’t see very often.
- Do check the invitation. While some employers invite spouses or significant others, many employees also keep the guest list to employees only. Verifying the situation at your holiday party ahead of time can prevent some awkwardness or hard feelings down the road.
- Do say ‘thanks.’ Coordinating a holiday party is a lot of work, so be sure to take a moment to thank the person(s) from your team who were responsible for planning and coordinating the event.
- Don’t be the last one to leave. No one wants to be first (someone ultimately has to be!), but you don’t want to be the last person to leave the work holiday party. Organizers don’t want people lingering when they’re trying to close it down. Aim to leave about 20-30 minutes before the official end time to leave plenty of opportunity to say your goodbyes.
Looking for a new job this holiday season? Helpmates works with top employers across Southern California. Search our available jobs or contact your nearest Helpmates office to learn more.