Up your organization through our office Christmas party
It may seem antithetical to the true Christmas spirit to use our office Christmas party as a career opportunity, b8t actually, the holidays are the prefect time to set the scene for job advances in the year ahead. Our boss will be feeling magnanimous, and the entire office environment will be impressionable. What we say and do will be remembered either to our advantage or disadvantage for the rest of the year. This calls for strategic levity, and politically astute festivity. Dance well, drink knowingly, and be the first to raise our glass in an enthusiastic toast to the CEO. But beware.
All too often, the office Christmas party gets to be a bore even before it happens. Don’t groan. The holiday season can and should be a time to restate and redefine roles. It’s the time to let our natural entrepreneurial tendencies blossom.
Gifts: part of our game plan, but don’t waste our exquisite taste:
Gifts are an inevitable part of the office Christmas party scenario. The gifts we give are an eloquent expression of our professional game plan; the gifts we receive in return are a telling message from the top about our progress. Let’s deal with the Big Guy or Gal first – our boss. Chances are this person already has a kidskin bound appointment book, gold plated paperclips, designer worry beads, the latest trendy management tome- not to mention a dozen executive gifts that we can’t even window shop for on our salary. Not to worry. Instead of giving our boss an obnoxiously dear, status conscious gift, sit down with a magic marker, some colored index cards and a stapler. The best gift we can give our boss is a hand made coupon book, offering our time as well as talents of which he or she may have no awareness.
Our coupons could fall into five basic categories:
- search and destroy
The nature of these categories is pretty self explanatory.
* A Rescue coupon might be redeemed, for instance, by our offering to tell jokes and make birdcalls while we wait for the courier to arrive with our slides for the quarterly sales meeting.
* A Firefighter coupon might be redeemed when we break up the floating Tupperware cartel in the clerical pool.
* A Search and Destroy coupon might be pulled when someone’s got to get to the bottom of who’s using the company Kroy Lettering System or word processor for making up bulletins on Sensitivity Training Sessions.
This coupon book will position us as a vital natural resource, a font of abilities, knowledge and energy. Unlike that conventional prestige gift, it won’t identify us as a clawing, climbing opportunist- which or course, we are. On the subject of office décor, we will score big points if we bring something edible to the office the day of the party. Eschew potato chips and no name dips try homemade bread, homemade by our baker, or our mother- we’re too busy to bake, or other high end delectable.
Booze- don’t wind up in the restroom on your knees:
Christmas cheer is an inevitable and important part of any Christmas bash. The management of most corporate environments is peopled by hard drinkers of both sexes; the ability to down boilermakers, tequila sunrises and vodka tonics is part of the corporate code. Don’t fight it but don’t get bombed, either. Remember that spending the last hours of the evening on our knees in the restroom in all likelihood will not lead to a corner office with a window. Don’t refuse any toast proposed or poured by anyone who outranks us, but save the heavy duty a wassailing for our personal celebrations. And remember not to drink anything garnished with red and green maraschino cherries if we’re serious about getting that promotion early.
Watch out for the holiday hots:
A familiar byproduct of Christmas cheer is the holiday hots. We know we’ve had a few strong ones. May be we’ve got a Christmas bonus check in our pocket that’s making us feel a bit feisty, and suddenly the folks we’ve worked with all year look a little different and a whole lot better to us. We notice that the sales rep we’ve always found obnoxious looks adorable in red. Our mouth gets dry and we start scanning the doorways for mistletoe. We have a sudden desire to elope with the communication manager. We find ourselves draping our arm casually around the shoulders of people from other departments. Perhaps we feel cashmere, or angora, and we decide to leave our hand there. All this touching and hugging and sharing and caring is perfectly fine. However, under no circumstances should we retire to the supplies closet, our office, our car, or anyone’s car or office with amorous intentions. We don not stop the elevator between floors. If we’re wearing a red felt Santa’s cap, we’re justified in asking members of the opposite sex to sit on our knee, but that’s as far as it goes. Bear in mind that the holiday hots will pass. We do not ogle or touch any portion of any co-worker’s anatomy which is not exposed to daylight. And do not French-kiss anyone we stand even a remote chance of ever seeing again.
A minor but strategic aspect of making good at the office Christmas party is having the right music. Volunteer to provide the entertainment; this way, we’ll have a jump on the musical selections, and can start polishing our dance steps early. Knowing the tapes in advance, our smooth moves assure our status as a future VP.
Do be helpful and a good sport during the holiday season and the office party. Carry bundles and parcels for the receptionist, this is the only way to be sure we’ll get our phone messages in the future, derive a tipsy co-worker home, carry jumper cables and assist peers with dead batteries; our good deeds will pay off all year. We also may want to consider giving single coupons to our colleagues. This way, our co workers will come to us thought the year to redeem their coupons and ask for favors. This is always fun. The great thing about doing favors for others is that assuming that at least one of us is keeping score, favors obligate reciprocation. We will feel omnipotent. Now they owe us lunch.