It's that wonderful time of year again. The time where we momentarily forget how much we hate our fucking jobs because we get to dress up in funny costumes and our employers fill us to the brim with free plonk until we chuck our guts up. Ah, the office Christmas party, good times.
While it all feels like fun and games, Christmas parties are plagued with reg flags, and when you're onto your tenth Aperol Spritz those reg flags can be a little harder to spot. So, in the spirit of Christmas giving, we thought we'd pass on our top tips to help you to NOT get fired from your job post xmas party.
DON'T engage in a D&M with your boss
It's tempting, I know. They're unusually chipper due to the copious amounts of alcohol they're drinking in an attempt to forget about how much this event is going to cost them, so it seems like a nice time for you to conduct an informal performance review with them re: their management skills. You'll sit down, place your hand on their knee (inappropriate) and say something along the following lines:
"Sandra, it has been a pleasure working for you this year. If I was to offer you a few pointers though, I'd suggest you do something about your micro-management, it's really fucking annoying! Sometimes, the team and I will purposefully not CC you in on an e-mail because we just know you'll fuck it up somehow, you know? Hahaha. Anyway, I know you're trying your hardest and all, but perhaps you should just learn to delegate a little more, especially when it comes to areas that you're not particularly skilled in."
Have some foresight for god sake and don't ever let yourself be alone with them at any point in the night. If they make a beeline for you politely smile, say something like "Wow Sandra, those reindeer antlers really make your eyes pop" and then tell Sandra you've got to go and take a dump – that way she won't follow you in for cubicle chats.
DON'T lick any of your colleagues...on any part of their body
A few years ago a friend of mine got wildly drunk at her work Christmas party and decided that it might be a nice idea to lick her work crush; the dude she had been lusting over for months. She's adamant that she was going in for the kiss but somehow, she ended up licking him along the chin. Mortifying.
Just as the "don't shit where you eat" rule applies to having sex with your colleagues, the same goes for licking, don't lick where you work. That's a sexual harassment claim waiting to happen.
DON'T go back into your office after everyone has left (even if you have a 24 hour pass)
Look, I know this is something that you do every so often. Your boss doesn't really mind. Maybe you buzz yourself in on a Friday eve, take a few beers from the mini fridge to keep you going until your Uber arrives to take you to the next clerb. No harm, no foul. However, Office Christmas Party drunk is next level drunk. It's the one time of year that you're likely to wake up to the taste of blood in your mouth, without having any idea of how it got there.
You're jacked up on Christmas spirit (and other spirits) and in all of your jolly excitement, you're bound to fuck up in some way shape or form. You could spill a beer onto your boss' expensive computer, you might scan a picture of your butt and send it out to your executive team members or you might take a shit somewhere you're not supposed to. All fireable offences, so just steer clear.
DON'T make the mistake of thinking you're all mates
Both Christmas time and alcohol give the fake illusion of 'joyfulness' and when you're under the influence of fake joy, you can start seeing the world through rose coloured glasses. All of a sudden, Irene from accounting isn't such a bore. Jason, the PR dude, doesn't make you stomach convulse with his sexist remarks and the scent of your pod mate's tuna stained tuppaware is starting to smell kind of nice. When you let your guard down in a professional setting, you're playing with god-damn fire kid.
These people are not your friends, therefore they might not 'get' your sense of humour. They are not your family, therefore they're not forced to love you after you do something tremendously stupid.
You'll be amazed how quickly a conversation can go from zero to one hundred in these settings. One minute you're having a hoot, mimicking anal penetration on the company mascot and the next minute you're sitting in on a discipline meeting with HR and 'the big boss', swaying back and forth in your chair with the awful memory of you humping a plush bulldog running on a loop through your brain. Tread lightly.
We still want you to get loose and let your hair down, we just want to make sure you've got a job to come back to next year. It's been a massive year and you've worked so fucking hard to get to the end, well done! Now, let's see if we can make it through this final month with our jobs, and our dignity, intact.