In the coming weeks, employers across a number of industries will have their annual holiday party. While it is customary for businesses and organizations to have functions in the workplace, many will have their parties offsite. Nevertheless, it is typical (and fodder for office lore) for some employees to have too much of a good time. The trailers for the new movie “Office Christmas Party” should give you an idea.
Ultimately, holiday fun should not be something to lose your job over. As such, we offer a few helpful tips so that you can avoid trouble at your next get together and keep your job.
Remember your kindergarten rules – The same things about touching and personal space that you learned when you were five still apply today. These rules are important because sexual harassment complaints are often based on…you guessed it, inappropriate touching.
Don’t engage in drinking games – It should not be a surprise that alcohol consumption tends to the main culprit in holiday party incidents. So while drinking games may seem fun at the time, the risk of them turning into controversy is too great.
“Gag” gifts may be trouble – Christmas presents such as racially insensitive gifts and sex toys are inappropriate. These types of gifts can get you fired.
Know your handbook – Knowing your employee handbook is important so that you can understand the specific actions can be taken against you in the event you are named in a sexual harassment complaint.
If you have additional questions about what to do about employment issues stemming from holiday parties, an experienced employment law attorney can help.