As we approach the end of 2015 many work places will hold their annual Staff Christmas parties. While this is a good time to unwind, socialise and look back on the year just gone it’s also important to remember that even though you might be surrounded by music, good food and a lot of alcohol you are still at work.

So before you open that tenth bottle of beer or pour that fifteenth glass of champagne, have a read through our guide to getting through the festive season unscathed… and most importantly – still employed!

The DON’Ts

Overdo the drink
It may seem obvious, but the number one tip for anyone attending the office party is to keep the drinking to a respectable level- remembering that for each person, that level will be different. Don’t end up covered in vomit convulsing under a table while your work mates enjoy the end of year celebrations. Years of hard work and a good reputation can be undone after an irresponsible night on the booze!

Clear the air
This isn’t a tribunal, its party! If you’ve got something you need to get off your chest do it through the correct channels at the appropriate time. Having a few drinks and letting your grievances be known while everyone is trying to have a good time will land you in hot water Monday.

Keep your hands to yourself
Sometimes, those who’ve had a few drinks like to get a little touchy and as the event goes on and the drinks flow it’s not unusual for the slightly inebriated to perhaps get a little hands on. Keep in mind that your organisations sexual harassment policy extends to these events and while you may be thinking that there is nothing untoward about your actions, they may still be considered inappropriate and unwelcomed by others in the work place.

The DOs

Get around and talk to everyone
In addition to having fun with those you work with every day, this is a great opportunity to catch up with people within your organisation you may not get to see or speak with on a daily basis. Use the time to strengthen your working relationships heading into a productive new year.

Drink water, plenty of water
If you plan to indulge on the free beer and wine make sure you remember to drink plenty of water as the event goes on. A glass of water in between every drink should keep you on your feet and out of trouble for the day.

Wear appropriate clothing
It might seem like an obvious one but how many times have you seen someone show up to an event dressed inappropriately? It’s embarrassing for everyone. So while the event is social in nature your FIG JAM t-shirt or mini skirt is probably not the way to go, just remember- if you wouldn’t wear it to work on causal Fridays, don’t wear it to the office party.

By Chris Cantatore