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We’ve all got our own Christmas party stories, but how many would you rather forget?

Your Christmas party is probably coming up very soon; but whenever it is you should read our advice on how to handle Christmas (or any other office-based) parties.

These four tips could help to make it a night to remember. And for the right reasons this time.

  1. Make sure staff know what’s expected of them

First of all, make sure your staff understand the party’s related to their role in your company. It’s not just a night out with their mates from work – it’s been organised for the whole business to enjoy.

So it’s important to be proactive and state clearly that it’s a work event when you organise it. For example, you may wish to remind them about the consequences of poor behaviour, and that you expect them to be at their desk on time in the morning – unless it’s on a Friday of course!

  1. Plan the right party

When you’re planning the event, make sure you take into account your own responsibilities to your staff as well. Organise it in a safe venue that all will enjoy, and that also serves non-alcoholic drinks.

A good thing to do is to plan a time that will limit drinking prior to the actual party. After all, you don’t want staff turning up in a state when you’re about to have a sit down meal.

Limiting the open bar and providing transport home are two things that should also be added to your list of priorities. They may seem minor, but they help to keep your staff safe and happy.

  1. Manage issues quickly and sensibly

When it comes to the party itself, there’s a certain level of pragmatism that won’t go amiss.

Don’t start a disciplinary procedure for every little incident. Deal with serious issues of inappropriate behaviour or misconduct properly, but if someone just got a little too carried away with the Christmas cheer perhaps just have a quiet word later on.

Most importantly, don’t leave problems to develop. As soon as you see something happening, step in and try to solve it or stop it, and make sure your senior managers do the same. The last thing you want to hear is that they saw something and did nothing about it!

  1. Manage social media properly

Lastly, if nothing major goes wrong, social media can be a great way to show the outside world just how great your business can be to work for. And a Christmas party is a fun time to do this.

However, it can also mean that drunken office antics quickly become the focus of internet scrutiny…

As a result, you need to ensure that you make necessary preparations so your staff’s drunken tweets don’t damage your business’ reputation.

In this event, ensuring that you have the proper employment policies in place to cover you is essential in the event that a staff member posts embarrassing images, or even comments about clients.

If you don’t have a social media policy, you may wish to create one, or add it to your existing disciplinary policy. In which case, you’ll need to inform your staff of the new addition to your company’s policies in writing, and tell them where they can access it. This way there can be no confusion should disciplinary action be needed.


This is all worst-case scenario, so lastly and most importantly, enjoy your Christmas party! If you want further guidance on any other area of office management, along with a host of other helpful HR advice, then why not get in touch with us today?