Most business experts agree you should go to your holiday work party unless you have a very legitimate reason why you can’t attend. So, even if you’re not in the mood, it’s best to suck it up and put on your best face for business purposes. And since you’re going, you might as well make it useful time spent.
Here’s a do and don’t guide to etiquette for the holiday work party.
Do show up. Make a cameo, even if you don’t want to be there. There’s an expectation that’s not really optional, and you never know when or where it will help you. If you’re invited to several, try to go to them all.
Do not be aloof or anti-social. It is a social event, after all. You’re there to mingle. Don’t stand in the corner on your smartphone, as it signals you’re not a team player.
Do stick to the dress code. It’s still a business event, and you don’t want people talking after about what you wore.
Do not arrive hungry. The holiday work party isn’t the place to stuff your face. And you don’t want to be drinking on an empty stomach. You’re not there for the food.
Do act like you’re having a good time. This is especially true if you’re not. Talk to people you don’t normally engage with at work and have topics ready to chat about that aren’t work-related.
Do say goodbye. Don’t try to sneak out. Say goodbye and thank you to either the hosts or your boss, or both.
Do bring something. If the party is at someone’s house, bring food or drink to share, or a small gift.
Do not forget to say hi to the boss. This should be self-explanatory, even if it’s just a hello.
Do stay sober. You can do what you want on your own time. This is the biggest mistake people make at a work event, and it will be remembered.