As the holiday season approaches, businesses gear up for one of the most anticipated events of the year – the Christmas party. The Christmas party provides a chance to relax, connect with colleagues, and unwind after a year of hard work. Boosting morale and fostering team unity, these gatherings facilitate personal connections beyond the workplace, positively influencing the overall atmosphere and attitudes in the office.
However, from an employer’s perspective, it is important to remember that an employer can be liable for the conduct of its employees at the party, even when it takes place somewhere other than in the workplace. While it’s a time for celebration, it’s also a critical period for HR professionals to remind staff of company policies to ensure that the festivities are inclusive, safe, and aligned with the company’s values.
This article provides essential HR advice to make your Christmas party a resounding success.
- Reminding Employees of Company Policies:
Before the Christmas party begins, it is advisable to send a reminder to all employees that any inappropriate behaviour will not be tolerated and will be subject to disciplinary action. Remind them to respect their colleagues and not to let alcohol blur their perception or result in inappropriate behaviour or conduct including sexual harassment.
- Control of social media:
Social media can act like a blessing and a curse at times so it may go without saying for employers to circulate rules about posts and pictures on social media in respect of work events. The rules can remind employees of posting anything that may put the company’s reputation into disrepute and to respect an individual’s privacy rights.
While the Christmas party is a time to enjoy themselves, management should remind employees that they should not consume excessive amounts of alcohol. While employers like to reward employees with a drink, too much booze might result in poor decisions, and you don’t want to deal with an alcohol-fuelled brawl.
- Inclusive Celebrations:
Across all companies, there are employees from different religious backgrounds and beliefs so this should be reflected and respected in any festive events.
- Recognition and Appreciation:
Use the Christmas party as an opportunity to recognize and appreciate employees’ hard work throughout the year. Consider incorporating an awards ceremony, acknowledging outstanding contributions.
It is a known thing that Christmas parties can have a lot of drinking involved and things can quickly take a turn for the worse. This ranges from employees sharing inappropriate videos online, to employees saying inappropriate things to each other which leads to a heated argument, and then the unwanted guests in the guards showing up to the party.
A well-planned and thoughtful Christmas party can contribute significantly to employee morale and team cohesion. By implementing these HR tips, businesses can ensure a festive and inclusive celebration that aligns with the company’s values and leaves a positive and lasting impression on employees. Following these tips will help you avoid any potentially awkward encounters in the office come Monday after the Christmas party.