Ah, the holiday office party. A time for employees to wind down, loosen their ties, drink some bubbly, and enjoy a night of much-earned revelry with co-workers. That is, until they wake up hungover and half-naked on top of the copy machine, covered in Post-it notes and crumpled Four Loko cans, and realize their reputation is ruined.
According to a study by HR solutions firm Adecco, this kind of unsavory behavior at office parties is far more common than you might expect. Published this week, the survey of more than a thousand American adults found that about 40% of workers say they've either embarrassed themselves or know someone who has at a work holiday party. And a shocking 23%--1 in 4!--have been reprimanded for their actions.
Pink slips are almost as frequent as red faces. More than 1 in 10 Americans say they know someone who has been fired for their inappropriate behavior at a holiday party. This behavior may include saying something inappropriate to a colleague (7%) or boss (4%), or drinking too much (20%).
Hookups happen, of course, but not as often as you might expect. Just 3% of respondents said they had had a fling with a colleague at a work holiday party. It may be the kind of thing people don't own up to--or it may be that being inebriated hurts your chances as much as it helps.
So be careful this holiday season. Try not to drink too much, sleep with your co-worker, insult your boss, or get fired. It's not worth it.
[Photo by Beltzner]