The Perils of the Work Christmas Party


The work Christmas party offers a great opportunity to celebrate the end of a long hard year of working together. They can be great for staff morale, bonding and celebrations and offer a relaxed informal setting to socialize with colleagues you may not otherwise engage with. However, this combination of informal environment, bonding and alcohol can often leave companies open to significant legal liabilities.  As such, it is important that staff members are informed of some simple does and don’ts before for the Christmas Party. By following these simple steps you can ensure that you take full advantage of the party whilst not becoming the Christmas Grinch:


Do know your limits:

With the now almost mandatory company bar tab, excess alcohol consumption can pose a major liability for employers. Besides the obvious personal embarrassment of the staff member in turning up to work the next day , intoxication can lead to increased aggression and decision impairment otherwise unseen within the workplace. To avoid this, know your limits! It should also be important to note that even once the intoxicated staff have left, the company may still be liable for your compensation claims and risk of negligence claims.


Do get off the phone:

Nobody likes a Christmas Grinch. Be sure to engage in face to face conversations with your colleagues. This will not only build rapport between your staff members but also will reflect well in the wider management. Also be aware of any posts, emails, texts or uploads made during the night may have disastrous consequences for you the next day, as the questionable decisions you made the previous night become public.


And please, no love under the mistletoe:

Accompanying the obvious embarrassment the next day, work Christmas parties can also set the scene for poor grade drama scenes, with often intense and intoxicated professions of love been directed towards office crushes. Despite the appeal of this in the moment, the long term advantages of these admissions are minimal. It’s best to avoid flirtation all together during these events and an unsolicited touching, comments or behaviors. Best to leave with your dignity intact!

Ultimately the work Christmas party should be a great way to celebrate the end of another successful business year together. By following some simple guidelines you should be able successfully ensure that you have a fun and relaxing evening, without risking your job by the end of the night. Cappello Rowe Lawyers wishes you all the best for the holidays and a great new year.

If you or someone you know would like any information on workplace policies or procedures for the coming Christmas period please do not hesitate to contact us on 02 8325 1520 or visit our website.