The staff Christmas party- is it worth it?

Given the opportunity, all employees like to let their hair down every now and then. For some reason however, the people who spend a large chunk of their lives together at work seem to create more headaches for HR and HR departments every Christmas.

A common sense approach seems to prevail and remains to be the best advice from The HR Dept on HR and employment issues surrounding the infamous staff Christmas party. The HR Dept comments: “every year we talk about alcohol, sexual harassment, inappropriate gifts and different religious viewpoints when it comes to Christmas in the workplace. Unfortunately where there are instances of poor or indecent behaviour, it causes huge amounts of stress for owners and directors of small and medium sized businesses.”

The HR Dept has provided top tips and advice on throwing a hassle-free Christmas party:

  • Above all, plan something that is easy to manage
  • An open bar simply causes too many headaches; for staff with a hangover as well as managers who have to deal with those that have one!
  • Warn staff about conduct during the party and that the staff party is an extension of the workplace
  • Use the Christmas party as an opportunity to boost morale
  • Bear in mind that if certain behaviour is something your mother would disapprove of, it is probably best not to do it.

The HR Dept continues: “it is also worth bearing in mind that there have already been several examples where employees have landed themselves in hot water for posting inappropriate comments on social networking sites such as facebook and twitter. A common sense approach to this is therefore needed”.

The HR Dept is far from being bah-humbug as there is still such value in the annual Christmas bash to thank staff for their hard work throughout the year. It is just unfortunate that the stories that reach the press are the negative ones that talk about large compensation awards resulting from nasty employment tribunals.

The HR Dept specialises in advising small and medium sized businesses on all employment issues.


Monday, November 26, 2012

Preventing People Problems

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