A lot of damage can be done to your meticulously managed personal brand at an office or work Christmas party if you are not careful. This is not the time to throw caution to the wind and let your hair down. Many people have made the mistake of thinking that because it is a “party” all bets are off and they can cut loose. Drinking too much alcohol, telling colleagues exactly what you think of them or wearing something completely inappropriate can cause irreparable damage to your reputation and subsequently your personal brand. Well not this year!
Handled the right way, the office party can be the perfect opportunity to impress your bosses and get ahead at work. Parties are one of the few occasions you’ll be in a room with some of the most influential people in your company, and knowing how to work that to your advantage could see you saying hello to a fantastic 2016.
I am going to share with you 6 tips to help you enjoy your work functions and strengthen your personal brand at the same time:
Don’t Drink too Much: The Christmas party is an extension of work, so if you get too drunk and do or say something inappropriate, people will think that’s how you conduct yourself in other parts of your life.
Dress Code: Plunging necklines, sky-high heels and cheesy Christmas ties; these are the fashion crimes of the holiday office party. Stick to the classics, this is not the time to be experimenting with fashion or trying a daring look. Christmas can be a stressful time so it’s important to wear what’s going to make you feel most confident.
Be on Time: Turning up ‘fashionably late’ is not an option and is not going to reflect well on you. Arriving on time gives you the opportunity to say hello to everyone, and still get out early without seeming rude.
Avoid the Mistletoe: Be careful – very careful – about flirting with co-workers because this is not the place for drunken hook-ups and will destroy your career .
Mingle: the Christmas party is an excellent opportunity to cement relationships and to get known in a good way. Talk to your co-workers and bosses and practice listening; this is as important as the small talk. If you get stuck with someone you don’t really like keep the chat short and remember: USE THAT WINNING SMILE!
Be Yourself: The core of your personal brand is authenticity and consistency, so don’t be fake because people will see through it. Genuinely engage with everyone and don’t be scared to allow people to get to know you.