How to Save Face After Your Work Party Antics

By Natasha Van Der Laan
7th Dec 2015

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Navigating the work Christmas party is no easy feat. It’s a minefield of one tequila shot too many, dodgy dancing and saying and/or doing things you later regret.

A glass or two of giggle juice helps to soften the awkwardness of mixing work relationships with holiday merriment, but you don’t want to cross that fine line and expose your inner Ke$ha.

Despite your best attempts, these things can happen. And, should they happen to you, we’ve complied a guide on how to save face in the sobering light of Monday morning.

Scenario 1: You danced like Miley

You’re a few bevvies deep when the DJ plays “Anaconda” by Nicki Minaj. Next thing you know, you’re twerking on the boardroom table. While it may have seemed like a good idea at the time, you’re guaranteed to get a bit of flak on Monday.

The best thing to do in this situation is accept what you’ve done, don’t dwell on it and keep your head held high. A wise woman named Fergie once said, “a little party never killed nobody” and we couldn’t agree more.

So what if you danced a little too hard? You were evidently having a jolly good time and that’s what Christmas is all about, right Santa?

Scenario 2: You kissed Jared from accounts

Some time between 9pm and midnight you decided Jared from accounts wasn’t that strange. In fact, he was kinda good looking. You complimented him on his strong sock game, one thing lead to another and you locked lips.

In the light of the day you realise the chemistry is very much non-existent. Monday morning leaves you with two options: pretend like it never happened or acknowledge it, laugh it off and move on. Our advice? Go with the latter.

No matter how tempting it is to sweep this awkward situation under the rug, things are only gonna get a whooole lot more awkward if you don’t address it. Fingers crossed Jared is a good sport and realises the fleeting moment of passion is exactly that: fleeting.  

Scenario 3: You told Ashley what you really thought of her

Long story short: Ashley is a douche. You made your true feelings known when you crossed paths the night before. Oopsie daisy.

It’s time to take page out of Justin Bieber’s book and say sorry for your actions. Don’t do a Jamie Foxx and blame it on the alcohol, just say, “I was out of order. I’m sorry for how I acted.”

Who did what in the lead up to the incident is irrelevant. You need to take responsibility for your actions on the night and try to make a mends.

Whether you like it or not, you’re stuck working with Ashley so it’s in your best interest to get along. Chances are Ashley isn’t half bad. Who knows? You might be wearing matching elf costumes at next year’s Christmas party!  

Just remember it will eventually blow over and be sure to address workplace conflicts when you’re sober. Nobody likes an obnoxious loser.

Scenario 4: You told your boss you deserve a pay rise

You’ve been working your butt off but your bank account doesn’t reflect this. For one reason or another, you decided the work Christmas party was the perfect place to chat to your boss about your unfair pay. Big no no.

Unfortunately for you, there’s no escaping this one. While your boss might not say anything to you, that doesn’t mean they’ve forgotten it. Be upfront and apologise that your behaviour was unprofessional.

If you’d really like to address your unfair pay or being overworked, your apology isn’t the time to do it. There will be time in the future to deal with a salary problem. Say: “I’m sorry I was inappropriate on Saturday night.” End of conversation.

Scenario 5: You vomited in a pot plant

You wake from your slumber with the inkling that you totally screwed up the night before. As you slowly piece together the evening’s events you come to the horrific realisation: you vomited in a pot plant… in front of your boss. Yikes!

You toss up your options: time travel to undo your actions, invest in a one-way ticket to Mars or fess up and apologise. Yup, the simplest (and most feasible) thing is to swallow a piece of humble pie and say sorry to anyone you offended with your behaviour—including your boss.

If possible, apologise in person. Take full responsibility for your actions and avoid giving excuses. Don’t repeatedly apologise—do it once and do it well. The more you talk about the incident, the longer it will remain in everyone’s minds. Pro tip: Make the pot plant mysteriously disappear from your work area to avoid painful memories.

Take a ride on the guilt train but don’t let the incident define you. Watch your step around the office, be conscientious and respectful and you will rebuild your reputation. Note to self: don’t let it happen again.

Haven’t had your office Christmas party yet? Then read our 15 Christmas Party Faux Pas You Need To Avoid. 

Image credit: The Box



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