Miffed Bosses, Missing Bras, and Other Holiday Party Disasters

Good office parties are great. Bad ones? Well, they are more fun to read about. Here are some holiday party nightmares from Inc.com readers. Make sure to share your story in the comments:

The one with the live fish

“We no longer have Christmas white elephants because, well, about two years ago someone brought a live beta fish wrapped up as a gift and, of course, playing Yankee swap (or whatever you want to call it), everyone picked all the gifts up and shook them before picking one to open and there was a poor fish in there the whole time. I felt bad for the coworker who ended up with the fish because he then had to take it home and buy a fish tank (it was wrapped in the plastic cup it came in from the store) and all the stuff to take care of it. But it’s still alive. His kids love it. I would not have loved that. That was the same year our boss threw a fit because someone got a better gift than he did and he should get the gift because, his catch phrase, “Imma boss!” He then made that person switch gifts with him.”

To keep reading, click here: Miffed Bosses, Missing Bras, and Other Holiday Party Disasters

And thanks for your great stories!

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7 thoughts on “Miffed Bosses, Missing Bras, and Other Holiday Party Disasters

  1. When I worked for a publishing company, our entrepreneurial CEO used to fly in for the annual holiday party and hand out bonus checks. One year, he was quite obviously high.

  2. Please, EvilHRLady, make the annual holiday party go away! Call me Scrooge, but partying with your coworkers, even if you like them, leads to nothing but trouble. As these stories illustrate, you tend to learn all sorts of things about people that you would rather not know—their horrible drinking problems, inappropriate sexual proclivities, and other things that should be kept under wraps.
    If you want to party during the holidays, that’s wonderful. And that’s what you have FRIENDS for. If the boss wants to do us a holiday favor, let us go home early on the 23rd. We have turkeys to cook and gifts to wrap.

    1. I love holiday parties that are during the day, aren’t required, have good food and no other expectations.

      Night time affairs? Blech. Required attendance? Blech. Charging admission? Double blech.

      1. Yup. Last year I had the you need to pay $50 per couple to attend the optional evening office party. My spouse wanted to go to see my coworkers but when we got there none of the people I work with were there. So we spent the evening talking to people from my company I had never seen before and have never seen since. We left early.

  3. Early in my HR career, I was asked to plan the regional holiday party at an upscale area hotel. We put 2 bottles each of red & white wine on the table, served canapés, salad, entrée with starch & 2 veggies, dessert, coffee/tea/milk. Employees could bring a guest, and the entrée options were steak, salmon, chicken and vegetarian pasta. The regional manager was missing when it was time for recognition and the gift raffle, so I went looking for him. He was in an empty conference room a couple doors away, with two female employees (neither his wife), all partially clothed, drunk, and busily ‘exploring’ each other. Monday he was relieved of duty, the ladies ditto, and according to the grapevine, divorce actions also followed. Next year, we had a catered luncheon for employees only, with coffee/tea/soda.

    I really dislike evening employee events!!!

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