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.
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.
3. 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.
4. 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.