Around one in eight (13 per cent) people who have attended a work Christmas party admit kissing a colleague, according to new polling published by the TUC.

The poll also reveals that one in four people have drunk too much alcohol at their Christmas bash and one in 14 have embarrassed themselves in front of their colleagues or their boss.

Advice for employers

Many workers look forward to their Christmas party as a chance to relax and unwind over a few drinks with their colleagues. But every year, trade union reps around the UK hear of problems at Christmas parties that could have been avoided with a little more planning in advance.

To make sure the Christmas party goes as smoothly as possible, the TUC has the following advice for bosses:

  • If you need to charge staff to come to the party, try and arrange something that all staff can afford, and don’t make people feel bad if they don’t want to come along.
  • Think about making sure there are plenty of non-alcoholic drinks available for people who don’t drink, and for those wanting a break from the booze.
  • Look into travel arrangements so that everyone gets home safely. You might want to think about laying on transport home or providing phone numbers for reputable cab companies.
  • Try not to be tempted to start talking about staff performance or other serious HR issues.


Advice for staff

Staff also have a big part to play in ensuring Christmas festivities are remembered for all the right reasons, and the TUC suggests that workers:

  • Try to resist the temptation to complain about colleagues or ask your boss for a pay rise.
  • Endeavour to avoid saying or doing anything which upsets or insults anyone if you have had a little too much ‘Christmas cheer’.
  • Think twice about posting embarrassing pictures of your boss or your colleagues on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Perhaps book a day’s leave after the party if you think you may be too tired to work.


TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:

“The annual Christmas party is a great way to unwind and celebrate a hard year’s work.

“But workers and bosses should remember that they are still in a work setting. Nobody wants to offend another member of staff or make a fool of themselves in front of colleagues. Or worse do something that might get them sacked just before Christmas.

“I hope everyone uses their common sense and has a happy, friendly and safe evening – and a great Christmas and New Year.”