A Christmas hangover too far?

Christmas party bust-up

The company Christmas party…employees wait all year to wind down, have a few drinks and show off some moves on the dance floor!

Employers, on the other hand, tend to feel slightly more apprehensive about the whole event.

Social get togethers for staff are a great way for businesses to boost morale, encourage mixing and show appreciation to employees. Unfortunately, on occasion when the correct expectations aren’t set in advance, employers can end up with a HR nightmare before Christmas.

We’ve put together our top tips and points to consider, helping you along to a Merry (but not too Merry) Christmas Party Season…

Top Tips:

Before the event:

  • Make sure you cater for all of your employees (consider food and drink requirements, venue access etc).
  • If an employee injures themselves, you could be liable. A free bar is a recipe for disaster – limit the free alcohol.
  • Send a memo to all staff, reminding them that they will still be representing the company and should behave responsibly.
  • Make the consequences of poor behaviour very clear.

On the night:

  • Appoint some senior staff as responsible supervisors – ensure they also understand this role involves a certain level of behaviour.
  • If you see behaviour which may have implications on your businesses reputation, intervene.
  • Stay calm! Make sure any troublesome staff get home safely and then deal with them back in the office, using your proper disciplinary and grievance procedures.

And don’t forget:

  • Employment legislation still applies.
  • Invite everyone, including those who are on maternity/paternity etc.
  • Lay off the pressure – it is not compulsory for staff to attend.
  • You have a duty of care to your employees. Consider providing transport home – at least to central locations.
  • Have fun and enjoy!

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