With Christmas less than three weeks away, tis the season for gift wrapping and cookie baking. And if you're a business reporter, it's also the time of year for public relations representatives to clog your inbox with pitches about "proper" holiday party etiquette, like a plump Santa making his way through a narrow chimney.
There's one cardinal rule for holiday parties: celebrate in moderation. But why leave it at that? Here's the sage advice we have received so far.
Designate a party pooper
"Assign someone in HR and/or management to monitor behavior and to ensure that all in attendance maintain a semi-professional level of behavior."
Schedule pointless meetings
"Create a party committee and be inclusive with the planning."
And send even more pointless emails
"Send a memo reminding employees that the holiday party is a business-related function and appropriate conduct is expected."
Booze at noon, anyone?
"Considering having the party during the day time or as a family event to limit the consumption of alcohol (e.g., spouses may be more likely to monitor the employee's drinking or act as the designated driver)."
Force small talk
"Make sure your management staff attends. Mingling all levels of personnel will help build bridges in the future."
Don't accidentally host a bachelor party
"Avoid suggestive gifts, offensive gag gifts, provocative decorations or risqué entertainment," and "Remove any scantily dressed female Santa helpers."
Or a middle-school dance
"If there is a band or a DJ, avoid 'slow' songs."
Make sure no one shows up
"Consider banning alcohol."