Managing people

The Grinch that stole your Christmas party

By Taskmaster
Friday, 07 December 2012

Itaskmastern life, some people see the glass as being half full. Others see the glass as being half-empty.


That is until you foot the bill for your staff Christmas party. Then you see the glass as being completely empty with your staff already at the bar ordering the next round.


As this excellent article points out, as far as the law is concerned, a court of law will treat everything that happens during your Christmas Party as if it happened in your office on Monday morning. All your obligations, including under OH&S and anti-discrimination laws, continue to apply no matter how many vodka shots you or your staff have.


Now, Old Taskmaster is certainly no teetotaller. The odd Brandy Old-fashioned has been known to have been consumed in the Taskmaster Manor over the years. But you can start to see why only 63% of employers will organise a staff Christmas party this year, compared to 84% in 2011.


If you’ve left organising a Christmas party to the last minute (and you should have it well and truly organised by now), consider having a company picnic. That way, you’re control of the barbeque and the esky when Bill from accounts comes back for his third drink in six minutes.


An even better option – assuming everything in your area isn’t already booked out – is to organise a dry activity. After all, when was the last time you went go karting?


Whatever you do, make sure you read and follow each of these five tips – especially the one about warning your staff about their (and your) obligations. On the night, keep an eye out for bad behaviour and don’t be afraid to fetch a taxi for any staff who have had “one too many”.


In life, there’s no such thing as free beer. So make it clear the price of “free beer” overindulgence at your staff Christmas party will not just be a year of ribbing from their colleagues – it will also be a meeting in your office on Monday morning if they cross the line.


Get it done – today!

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