Christmas Etiquette

As discussed on the John Murray Show Christmas Etiquette Friday 12th December.

1.First thing to remember – Don’t get hammered because the drink is free at the Office Christmas party – despite what some may think, the free bar is not a challenge.
2. Don’t mix your drinks or if you do, know the one that will turn you into Medusa and stay clear of it. Remember girls carpet wrestling in a pencil party dress is somewhat difficult
3. Try to eat before you lay siege to the cocktail bar but do remember… depending on your liquor capacity, you may be seeing that burger later.
4. When people have had too much to drink they tend to climb on things … you know, Tables, Chairs, each other so Ladies do try to keep off the tables when dancing or your boss may finally realise just why you have no visible panty line
5. And keeping this in mind, it’s best not to remove items of clothing at the party save for one’s coat and gloves upon arrival. Apart from it being somewhat indiscreet to share your important bits with the rest of the office, you may not get the adulation you had hoped for
6. Regardless of the donor – Do not refuse a festive peck under the Mistletoe unless you are diseased – passing your head cold on to the rest of the office will not be appreciated. However, festive pecks do not involve tongues, boobs or bums.
7. Remember, Don’t ever tell your immediate boss what you think of him/her unless it’s good – it’s never a great idea if you want to climb the office ladder.
8. If feeling a little peeved, do not engage with the owner of the company apart from wishing them a ‘Happy Christmas’. They couldn’t survive on what they pay you, they don’t really care what you think and probably can’t wait to get off to that posh dinner party at their friends house.
9. Don’t share too much personal information with colleagues whilst under the influence. After all, knowing that Yvonne from accounts likes to sellotape live butterflies to her bedroom wall because she thinks they’re pretty or that Rodney from dispatches likes to dress up in his sisters clothes and dance in the moonlight never sounds quite as acceptable in the cold light of day.
10. If you are going to have one over the eight, always try to keep your wits about you and arrange a lift or taxi home with someone you can rely on so you are not wandering the streets in a daze or sitting on the curb wondering why you no longer have your shoes. After all, waking up next to Rodney the following morning who is now modelling your knickers can be somewhat disconcerting!

Moving Away from the office Christmas Party … One that appears again and again…

1. Newly married couples who want to spend their first Christmas alone but are being badgered by both families to spend it with them, you can defuse this potential bomb by announcing that you want to spend your first Christmas together in bed having fun whilst drinking champagne. This should kill the nagging stone dead.
2. Now … If you are buying a clothing gift for someone but are not sure of their size, ask for a gift receipt (no price on it) so they can change it for a different size or something completely different without embarrassment.
3. If you are re gifting a present, be very careful to check packaging for original gift card to avoid embarrassment!
4. Constantly get a lesser present from a friend or no gift at all? Learn from your mistake and instead of getting cross again this year, buy something pleasantly inexpensive and wrap it nicely but don’t fill in the tag. That way, if they don’t rock up with anything again this year there are no hard feelings, if they do, 30 seconds to write their name on the tag will fix it
5. When you receive a present, no matter how small, always be gracious and thankful – someone has taken time to pick and wrap it for you.
6. If you go out of your way to do everything for a relative or friend at Christmas and it’s not reciprocated remember the saying – ‘never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option’. Be polite but save the loving for someone who is more deserving of your time and kindness.
7. If you have been invited to Christmas lunch, arrive on time and laden with goodies – check with your hostess, maybe you could be responsible for the cheese, chocolates and liqueurs. 8. Offer to help but know when to get out of the kitchen. Do not follow the hostess around – it’s unnerving, however, keep an eye out for signs of panic and quietly help. Don’t tell your hostess how to do things – each to her own. Don’t watch TV if no one else is, it’s rude. If children are present, don’t be Scrooge – embrace the festive spirit and join in the fun – if you can’t, don’t inflict yourself on the jolly people – stay at home and enjoy being miserable on your own.
8. Always remember to send a thank you card for the lunch to arrive no later than the second week of January and make sure to mention a particular part of the day or lunch that you enjoyed and thank them again for their gifts.
9. Christmas tipping – invaluable employees such as Nannies and cleaners deserve a little something special and shouldn’t be fobbed off with a cheap or tacky present – not if you want to keep them sweet and they are worth it. Your postman also deserves that little something if he has been helpful with packages etc throughout the year. It is nice for your child’s teacher to receive a gift at Christmas such as a house plant, bottle of wine or box of chocolates – most children gift on the last day of term and it’s awkward if yours is the odd one out even if the teachers a little less than you had hoped for!
10. Finally, a very Happy Christmas to all!


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