Work MattersThe holidays are fast approaching and with it your invitation to the work Christmas party. As a working carer, you are probably feeling more highly stressed than your fellow non-carer workmates so do take this into account if you feel the need to let your hair down. All that good work you have put in during the year can be undone in just a moment so don’t do something you might be sorry for later.

Christmas parties are infamous for bringing out the worst in people and attendees often forget the party is an extension of the work environment. However, if you take heed of the following tips, you should keep your reputation and your job intact.

  • Do not refuse the invitation. Attending is a great opportunity to network and socialise with people from your organisation and other invited guests who may be helpful to you in your work as well as being good company.
  • Adhere to the dress code, make sure you know where you are going and leave enough time to arrive on time.
  • If possible, take your partner or go with a friend or colleague to ensure a flirt-free evening and a safe journey home.
  • Make sure you have some good conversation starters so you can easily mingle with other guests.
  • Don’t say anything you wouldn’t usually say on a normal day at work.
  • Beware the inappropriate joke. Not all people share the same sense of humour so you will need to take this into account before telling it.
  • Try not to gossip and avoid criticism of fellow workers.
  • Do not use the occasion to confront someone who you find annoying or who has been harassing you at work – always go through the proper channels if required.
  • If you’re going to drink alcohol, decide on your limit and stick to it.
  • Don’t mix your drinks – champagne and Scotch cocktails are a guaranteed way of losing more than your reserve!
  • If someone is coming on too strong and, for example, insists on a kiss under the mistletoe, make it clear that their behaviour is not wanted. There is no need to be rude but don’t just laugh it off.
  • If food is served buffet style and especially if you have to eat standing up, try not to choose anything that is difficult to consume, particularly when you have to eat it in front of others.
  • Don’t gesture erratically when eating finger food or you could find your salmon savoury flying through the air and landing in your boss’s drink!
  • If travelling home alone, arrange a lift beforehand so you don’t have to share a taxi or car ride with someone who may make you feel uncomfortable.

Have a wonderful time and enjoy the party.

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