13 December 2016

It's getting colder, Slade are playing in every other shop and there is a world shortage of tinsel so it must be that time of year again: yes, it's the annual warning about the dangers of the work Christmas party.

This year's comes courtesy of the TUC which has revealed the results of a survey showing that one in four people have drunk too much alcohol at their work's do, one in eight have kissed a colleague and one in 14 have "embarrassed themselves in front of their colleagues or their boss".

Meanwhile, a similar number (7%) were being sick although presumably not in front of their colleagues or boss.

The TUC has followed up its light-hearted polling with top tips for employers wanting to enjoy a "fuss-free festive bash". These include making sure there are plenty of non-alcoholic drinks available for people who don’t drink, and for those wanting a break from the booze.

Caring bosses might also want to consider laying on transport home or providing phone numbers for reputable cab companies, the TUC suggests, and, if charging for an event, should try and arrange something that all staff can afford.

And if they really want the party to go with a bang, then "don't start talking about staff performance or other serious HR issues".

Similarly, staff at the party should resist the temptation to complain about colleagues or to ask for a pay rise and should perhaps forget social media for a day: posting embarrassing pictures of your boss or colleagues on Facebook is never a good idea.

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady spread seasonal cheer by pointing out that workers and bosses should remember that they are still in a work setting.

"Nobody wants to offend another member of staff or make a fool of themselves in front of colleagues," she said. "Or worse do something that might get them sacked just before Christmas."