DO NOT POST Dos and Don’ts of Shared Office Holiday Celebrations
Now that the winter holidays are mere weeks away, office parties are on many schedules. Despite what looked like a move away from such parties in recent years, the majority of companies still hold an annual holiday gathering.
While some workers may find these celebrations stressful and others might find them dull, the fact is they’re not as easy to get right as you might think. In fact, the planning can be fraught with social and legal concerns.
Luckily we’ve gathered the top three ways to maneuver those challenges and have a December at work that everyone — including those in shared and temporary office spaces — can enjoy.
Respect religious differences
In decades past, “winter holidays” was synonymous with Christmas — and any other celebration took a very distant backseat. Today, however, you’re nearly as likely to find Hanukkah and Kwanzaa decorations as you are Christmas trees in the lobby of any large DC office building. Inclusivity is important, so when contemplating office-party decorations, neutral is best. Instead of manger scenes and menorahs, think snowflakes and sleds.
If you’re planning an off-hours party, make the day and time ones that are considerate of employees or office-space members customs and practices.
Consider going dry
That old staple of adult parties, alcohol, can be nice when enjoyed moderately. However, it can also lead to serious problems.
“Employees who overindulge at a work function can cost a company millions if they injure someone driving…injure themselves, become belligerent and pick a fight, or behave inappropriately,” writes Tamara Lytle in an article for shrm.org.
So whether it’s a post-lunch holiday get-together in a common area at your office or an evening out at a steakhouse with your boss and 50 colleagues, give a dry celebration its due consideration. Good conversation, good food, and merriment can still be had by all.
Make it about more (than presents and food)
Just because Thanksgiving is over doesn’t mean we should let its central theme go by the wayside. Rather than let the holiday season turn into a six-week-long “Treat Yo’ Self” session, encourage your employees, colleagues, or fellow coworkers to give to those less fortunate than themselves.
“No matter what holiday you celebrate, this time of year often incites more “gimme, gimme” than gratitude and giving,” writes Jackie Gillard in a piece for Huffington Post Canada. “We live in a consumers’ world where marketing campaigns drive up the value of “stuff” over the joys of generosity and appreciation.”
Why not talk to your boss or the management at your shared office space about setting up a Dignity Drive? Your effort doesn’t have to be expansive or costly to make an impact. Last year, Metro Offices teamed up with DC’s McClendon Center to gather toiletries, underwear, and personal hygiene items such as soap and shampoo for Washington’s mentally ill residents. Thanks to the donations from coworkers at our nine locations, the campaign was a success. There’s nothing like giving back to make you appreciate what you have. Isn’t that what the holiday season is really all about?
The new year is almost here. If you’re embarking on a new solo adventure or just need a change of scenery, now’s the time to look at shared office space. Browse Metro Offices’ locations today.