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Ten Holiday Office Party Sins

Holiday office parties can be a great time for networking and really getting to know the people you work with as well as those in higher positions in the company. But the office holiday party can also be an opportunity to easily make a lot of career mistakes, one drink at a time. In a recent national survey by nonprofit Caron Treatment Centers, more than half the people who’ve attended work-related outings say they’ve observed the following among colleagues under the influence of alcohol:

  • Seen someone flirt with a co-worker or supervisor (30 percent)
  • Heard a colleague or supervisor share inappropriate details about themselves or a co-worker (26 percent)
  • Witnessed someone arguing or becoming aggressive with a colleague or supervisor (19 percent)
  • Learned of co-workers or supervisors engaging in sexual activity while under the influence of alcohol (9 percent)
There are many traps you can easily fall into at the office holiday party, so here is our guide so you can be aware of them.

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#1 Don’t hook up with a co-worker

Especially if you are in a drunken state. Yes, once in a while this person may end up being your future spouse but even if that does happen people will still remember that you were the one making out in the coat closet. The next day you will not only have a hangover but a tarnished reputation and possibly a job on the line. According to one survey, 29 percent of adults have, while at an office holiday party, experienced or observed sexual advances between people who work together. With one click of a cell phone your entire career can be blown. In addition, if you make unwanted advances to a colleague, you may let yourself in for a sexual harassment suit; there are plenty of witnesses, after all. 

Besides the fact that alcohol may lead to that regrettable office hook-up, it can also lead to you making a complete ass of yourself. In addition, if you get drunk at a workplace party, your boss could be liable if you injure someone else. In some states, a host who serves alcohol to a clearly drunk guest may be held legally responsible if that person is later involved in a drunk driving incident or serious car crash. Getting your company sued is probably not conducive to continued employment.
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#3 Don’t dress inappropriately

Just because it is a party, it doesn’t mean it’s not a business event. You are not at Tao in Vegas. You are with people you have to see every day so they don’t need to see exactly how large your breasts are.

See what other sins you should avoid at your office holiday party.