13 things you should never do at the office holiday party

‘Tis the season for office holiday parties, which can be fun and festive if everyone is on their best behaviour — or disastrous when too many people decide to let loose.

Unfortunately, the latter happens far too often.

“People need to remember that although the holiday party is a time to celebrate, this activity is still a business event and how you behave matters,” says Barbara Pachter, an etiquette expert and the author of “The Essentials of Business Etiquette.”

“People have said and done all sorts of inappropriate things that have impacted their career by not following simple etiquette rules,” she adds. “For example, it is important to stay sober. One young man got drunk at his holiday party, cursed out his boss, and got fired on the spot. The next day he couldn’t understand why his badge didn’t work. He had no recollection of the previous evening’s events.”

According to a new CareerBuilder survey, a whopping 66% of employers say they will throw a holiday party this year. If your company is one of them and you want to keep your job and reputation intact, here are some simple etiquette rules to follow:

4. Don't get drunk.

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This is an important rule -- and yet, so many people fail to follow it.

'You don't have to drink, but if you do, stay sober,' says Pachter. 'It's easy to do something outrageous when you have had too much to drink.'

She suggests setting a limit for yourself before going to the party, and sticking to it. 'It is much easier to limit your intake that way,' she says. 'Or, order a drink you don't like and sip it slowly all night.'

10. Don't flirt.

This is not the time to hit on your boss, or his spouse.

Sometimes liquid courage gets the best of us -- so stay away from alcohol if you don't think you can control yourself while under the influence.

11. Don't post photos or comments that could get you in trouble.


Avoid posting negative comments to social media about how 'lame' the party was, or how much the food 'sucked.' Also, do not post photos of your colleagues taking shots or engaging in other inappropriate behaviour.

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