Office Party Etiquette : How To Be A Gracious Guest

An office party is meant to make the employees relaxed and bring them in a more cordial and friendly environment, one that is not formal and office-like. It is a chance to let loose, indulge in fun, and celebrate with the colleagues. However, it is also a potential disaster plot; one false move and the entire reputation of the employee in front of the office is lost.

Office Party Etiquette : Dos and don’ts

Being a good party guest is just as important as hosting a memorable office party. As such, we bring the dos and don’ts of an office party etiquette an employee needs to follow religiously.

1. Do Show Up — or, better RSVP

Please make sure you respond to the party invitation within 48 hours, regardless of how you receive it, be it by mail, telephone, or traditional method. You must show up at the party, as failing to attend leaves a negative message. If the inability to participate in is unavoidable, it is better to RSVP with the regrets soon. As the company is investing in the entertainment for the employees, it will be insulting to not attend after agreeing to participate and waste their money.

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Office Party Etiquette

2. Do Arrive and Depart on Time

Follow the time given in the invitation (for the arrival as well as the departure). Office party etiquette dictates that arriving late is inappropriate and a big no-no in a corporate setting. Make sure to attend within 15-20 minutes of arrival time. It would help if you arrived on time and never be the one to leave last from the office party.

office party themes3. Don’t Come with an Extra Guest

Make sure you re-read the invitation carefully so that you are aware of the company policy on guests. It is better to check if the event is for employees only, or it includes the attendance of spouses, dates, or a Plus One is mentioned.

office party etiquette manners4. Don’t wear Overtly Casual Clothes

Never wear skimpy, tight, or revealing outfits to an office party. Adhere to the guidelines mentioned in the invitation. The party though, might be a casual one, it is still attended by co-workers and managers, and you would ever want to dress inappropriately for the event. Create a better professional image in the party, though it doesn’t mean to dress in formal attire. Unless the party is a black-tie or a casual dress code event, you should wear something semi-formal and appropriate.

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5. Do Greet Everyone

When you arrive at the event/party, make sure you greet and shake hands with hosts and the event planners. If the office is on a partnership basis, welcome all the partners. Talk briefly and compliment on the party and its aspects.

general office party etiquette

6. Don’t Talk Exclusively

When you speak at the office party, avoid talking a lot. Indulge in the party and mingle with the colleagues to know them at a personal level. Avoid talk on topics like sex, politics, religion or gossiping. Keep the discussions positive brief. Also avoid chats and conversations on work deadlines, upcoming projects as well as demanding clients.

office party etiquette and rules

7. Don’t Hide in a Room Corner

Avoid heading to the bar or buffet the moment you arrive at the party. Everyone can notice you, your entrance and at the party. Enter the party, pause, greet the people, and shake hands. Don’t only mingle with your colleagues, talk with your managers, and greet them too. Introduce yourself as well as your department. An office party is an excellent opportunity to get into the eye of the organization’s leadership.

office party introvert

8. Don’t Over-Drink

Drink responsibly and in limits. Remember, you are in an office setting, and you have to face them the next day. Alcohol, along with a loose tongue, is a dangerous combination. Opt for tea, club soda, or water in place of alcohol. Never overdo the drink.

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9. Don’t Binge at the Buffet

The office party is not meant for hungry people, and it is more an opportunity to know your colleagues and office people. Make sure you eat something before coming to the party, don’t throw yourself at the buffet with a plate overflowing with food. Keep the hands clean and avoid a mouth full while eating.

office party dos and donts

10. Do say Thank You

Show your gratitude for the party by saying thank you to the managers and bosses. A simple ‘thank you’ goes a long way.

office party themes

11. Attend Office the Next Day

Never call in ‘sick’ the next day, visit the office. If you are over-indulged, arrive at the office late, but make sure you visit. Calling in sick and not visiting the office the next day is the worst thing to do.

office party etiquette and rules

Follow the office party rules mentioned above and make the evening an enjoyable experience for both you and your office people. When celebrated respectfully and adequately, the office party would be an excellent opportunity to develop camaraderie with fellow employees, develop a stronger office relationship, and leave a remarkable impression in front of the organization.

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Diana Coker
Diana Coker is a staff writer at The HR Digest, based in New York. She also reports for brands like Technowize. Diana covers HR news, corporate culture, employee benefits, compensation, and leadership. She loves writing HR success stories of individuals who inspire the world. She’s keen on political science and entertains her readers by covering usual workplace tactics.

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