The work Christmas party has a reputation for being a wild night of drunken arguments, embarrassing dance numbers and regrettable photocopier incidents.
But it should also be the one time of year that you treat your employees to a fun and festive evening of food, music and entertainment to show them your appreciation for the hard work they have invested over the last 12 months.
By now, I am sure most of you have already booked your reservations, notified your employees and picked out your outfit but there is a still a lot more preparation involved in the Christmas party from a HR perspective.
In order to give your employees the Christmas party they deserve, and avoid any awkward gross misconduct meetings on Monday morning, here are some things you should consider before the big event.
Lay out the ground rules
Though your employees should already understand that the Christmas party is a work event; therefore, the same policies will apply when it comes to misconduct and bad behaviour, you should still reinforce this with a staff email before the big day.
Remind them that any inappropriate behaviour will be treated as gross misconduct and could lead to a disciplinary procedure, and even dismissal.
Get the team involved
Even once the party has been booked and organised, there are still opportunities for your staff to get involved.
Why not arrange a Secret Santa that can be exchanged at the party, or ask them to suggest fancy dress themes/entertainment for the night.
Cater to everyone
It’s important to keep in mind the diversity of your workforce.
Staff of religions outside of Christianity may not feel comfortable participating in the festive celebrations, so attendance should be optional.
Furthermore, you should make sure that non-alcoholic drinks and vegetarian options are available and that you cater to every dietary need.
As an employer, your duties extend to any work-related events outside of the premises.
This means that you need to be alert and keep an eye on things such as alcohol consumption which may have a negative effect on employee’s behaviour.
If you spot any potential mishaps early on then you can nip them in the bud before they escalate.
Yes, there are Health and Safety and HR matters to be concerned with and oversee, but it’s important that you encourage your employees to enjoy themselves and have a good time.
It’s a celebration that only comes around once a year, so make the most of it.
If you need some support with your work Christmas party, we can provide you with a standard memo and access to our HR advice line.
Just call us on 0845 2626 260 to book a free consultation