I am student and I am doing a project on social situation in HR. Do you have any ideas that I could do my project on? I was thinking about presenting information on Christmas and Halloween parties at work. Thanks for your help!

Since the semester is now undoubtedly over, and you had to do your own darn homework (see how evil I am?) I’ll respond to your question.

Work is work. Social life is social life. Don’t confuse the two. You are at a work party? Party on, dude, right? No. You are still at work. Work=work. You are hanging out with friends and your boss happens to be at the same restaurant. You now must be on work behavior.

I am such a party pooper. (It’s genetic, by the way. When my siblings and I complained to my grandmother that my father didn’t understand the teenage need to do fun stuff my grandmother said, rather matter-of-factly, “your father was never a teenager.” I have now turned into him, except for his insane desire to get up at 5:00 a.m. What is up with that?)

When I’m queen of the universe, work parties will occur during lunch. Free food (good food, please) and no alcohol will be served. See, party pooper? (Full disclosure–I don’t drink anyway, so I don’t feel slighted in such situations.)

When a company sponsors an event, liability attaches. You serve alcohol and you better make sure people have a way home that doesn’t involve driving their drunken selves.

Employees (especially the non-management types) feel obligated to attend company parties, regardless of whether they want to or not. This makes it another “work” function. Even if you invite spouses/significant others to make it a real “party, all that means is that now your employees have to find a babysitter, pay a babysitter and spend an evening with people they see all day anyway.

Okay, so I don’t like office parties. Other people do. I’m happy to hear their opinions. Just don’t make me come to your office parties.

Halloween costumes? Sure. I’m all for them. During the day. Depending on your business.

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4 thoughts on “Parties!

  1. This is my motto:
    I am in HR. I am not and will never be the party planner. If you force me to plan a party it will be the worst party you have ever been to and then you will never try to force me to do it again. Thank you and good day.

    PS I am also not the break room fridge cleaner-outer, workplace psychologist or nurse. Ok thanks bye!

  2. You are very lucky that you work in a Fortune 500 company, lady. 😉 If you took a job in the entertainment industry and didn’t allow “fun” at work, you’d be gone in 20 minutes.

    @hr wench – if you’re not the workplace psychologist then what do you do… besides being a paper pusher?

  3. I don’t mind “lunch hour” parties with pizzas or sub sandwiches or some other food brought in from a restaurant. (No “pot luck” dishes, please. You never know how they were made, and some people get sick!) The best thing about this kind of party is that it doesn’t drag on endlessly. People have to get back to work. It’s also easy to attend (no driving to some remote location, or someone’s house), and there are often leftovers for people to take home for dinner. (A nice perk for single folks!) But please don’t make me attend evening or weekend events, especially if they’re 50 miles away and I have to bring food. Sorry, but I prefer to spend that time with my family.

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