Valérie Fernandez

By Valérie Fernandez

November 30, 2016


4 Recommendations for a Successful Office Party

Article revised on 28 November 2017

If there’s one corporate social event that people look forward to, it’s the annual Christmas party. It provides an ideal setting for employees to get to know one another better, and for management to reward their teams for their hard work, regardless of the chosen format (dinner, gift exchange, show, group activity, etc.).

To make sure the event takes place without a hitch, the employer and employees each have their share of responsibility. Here are 4 recommendations for a successful office party.

1. Alcool 

Employer/Manager: There are many strategies to help promote the responsible consumption of alcohol: Coupons, limited bottles, inviting spouses, access to breathalysers, etc. No matter which method you choose, be sure to inform employees and the caterer or the selected establishment.

Employee: Alcohol is often described as a social lubricant, so it’s important to moderate your consumption and be more mindful of words and behaviour. Don’t forget that you’ll have to face the same people the next time you return to the office so you don’t want to feel ashamed of something you may have said or done.

2. Transportation

Employer/Manager: Have a safe ride service like Tolérance Zéro available for employees or hand out Operation Red Nose cards. You can also work out an agreement with a taxi company. If you’re holding the event in a hotel, try to negotiate a lower room rate.

Employee: Plan transportation for the return trip home or accommodation on site. If you spot a colleague who’s impaired and intends to get behind the wheel, help him or her find another solution.

3. Relationships

Employer/Manager: Be mindful of becoming too friendly and the nature of your conversations. An office party remains tied to work and as an employer or manager, you must demonstrate exemplary behaviour.

Employee: Even though it’s a festive occasion, it remains a work-related function and the same rules of conduct as the office apply. It’s not the place for rambunctious behaviour, flirting with colleagues or settling old disputes. If you think you might get out of control, it’s okay not to attend the party.

4. Social media

Employer/Manager: Posting office party photos on the company’s Facebook page could be an interesting strategy to show how dynamic your organization is, but remember that posting photos of your employees without their consent can affect their personal lives. Ask for their permission before posting photos.

Employee: Socializing is fine….but posting photos of yourself with colleagues on one of your social media accounts without their permission may create uncomfortable situations for some people. Ask for their consent before posting photos.

Did you know?

Employers are required to protect the health, safety and integrity of their employees, and must take the necessary steps to prevent harassment. As to the employees, they are subject to the policies in effect in the company. Safety and fun can go hand in hand¹.

Have a great time at the event but just keep in mind: Moderation in all things.

Enjoy the party!



Want to encourage your employees to adopt healthy lifestyle habits?

Discover the VIVA workplace health and wellness program.

Visit our website

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