Reward or Regret?
Posted on 5th November 2023 at 20:23
Lorraine Macdonald owner and founder of Horizon HR, and member of Bedford and Northampton Busy Women Networks has some valuable tips for your business as we head into the festive season and the end of year Christmas Party! Before you say it, it is not too early to start talking about it, everything festive is in the shops already!
The work Christmas party is often a highlight of the year, where employees can put on their cheesy
Christmas jumpers and be rewarded for their hard work a great social and team building event to
end the year on.
It’s important however for you to remember that – Your Christmas party is an extension of the workplace and although relaxed the same conduct is expected. Nearly everyone can recall a story
where the mixture of alcohol, relaxed inhibitions and the disregard for normal conduct in the workplace has left someone embarrassed the morning after and at risk of disciplinary action.
Below are some tips from us here at Horizon HR to ensure that your party is a huge success
celebrating your workplace and ending the year on a high!
Pre-party Communications: aside from the venue, date & dress code, employees should be
reminded that certain standards of conduct are expected to ensure everyone has a good time.
Employees should be reminded that any inappropriate behaviour may lead to disciplinary action and
employers are likely to be deemed liable for the actions of the employees.
Alcohol: if you decide to provide free alcohol, you may not be entitled to hold employees
accountable for any resultant inappropriate drunken behaviour.
It is important to ensure non-alcoholic drinks are available to those who don’t drink due to religious
reasons; their age or personal preference.
Social Media: It is highly likely that pictures will end up on social media and cases in relation to this
have steadily increased over the years. You should ensure that employees know the rules regarding
the use of social media in relation to work related events.
Don’t discriminate: Certain religions don’t celebrate Christmas and some employees may not want
to attend, so you should ensure that you do not put undue pressure on employees; it is their choice.
Beware the aftermath: Christmas parties often lead to office romances and ‘gossip’ of what
happened. You need to be clear on your stance to office romances.
Harassment can be physical or verbal – an employee may see their light-hearted and good nature
comment be misconstrued by another.
Policy perfect: finally, you should ensure that your policies are up to date and that employees are
reminded of their terms.
Having said all this, we really don’t support the Christmas party becoming a bland and boring affair.
With the right communication and policy structure in place, employers can provide an enjoyable
experience without adding ‘disciplinary investigations’ to the New Year ‘to do’ list.
As we draw this blog to a close, and wish you all a wonderful festive season!
I want to show my appreciation to Aruna and all the members of Busy Women in Bedford and
Northampton, it has been instrumental in my business journey.
The invaluable network of supportive and inspirational business women has provided me with
mentorship, collaboration opportunities, a platform to showcase the work that my team deliver ,
and last but not least everlasting friendships.
Their collective wisdom and shared experiences have helped me navigate challenges and celebrate
successes. Together, and with Aruna at the forefront they foster a thriving community of
empowerment and growth, and for that, I'm endlessly grateful.
Follow Horizon HR on socials for more tips, upcoming news and things you need to know about
managing people. Let’s connect!
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