After Hours, 6 Things NOT to do on a Staff Night Out23rd August 2015 | George Atkins
Its hit 5’o clock on a Friday afternoon, you’re finished for the weekend, everyone decides to roll down to the pub for a few beers, great! But it is important to remember that this could be considered a ‘work outing’, not to be confused with drinks with mates where you can get away with so much more. Mixing work with leisure activities is a minefield, so here are our top 6 things to avoid on a staff night out.
DON’T get too drunk
Simple one this; mixing work and pleasure can be a risky business, especially when alcohol is present. Overdoing it on Friday afternoon whilst in the company of your line manager could quite easily end in embarrassment! Becoming more acquainted with work colleagues is no bad thing. However, reputations are hard earned and easily lost so just keep that in mind when faced with a 6th round of Sambuca.
DON’T prioritise play over work
There’s nothing more irritating than someone who fails consistently to manage their responsibilities at work and being seen down the pub than behind your desk is an express train to dismissal; don’t be that person! If you have a important presentation to your board of directors on Wednesday morning, going out on the lash on Tuesday night is maybe not the best idea and you’ll reek of unprofessionalism and tequila, not a good impression to give to employers and work ‘mates’. At the risk of patronising again, socialisation with fellow workers is crucial for a happy work environment and it helps alleviate stress levels; just take it easy so you’ll have a ‘work environment’ to go to in the first place!
If you’re out on a work social, DON’T forget to actually socialise!
There is no point going out on a work ‘do’ so you can become better acquainted with your work colleagues if your eyes will be fixated on a phone all night long; actually talk to people! Nothing will distant your further from the people you spend most of your time with than failing to engage on a communicative level and being a anti-socialite. Admittedly, Twitter is a pleasant distraction from real life and Instagram is perhaps more interesting than talking to Ian from accounts but you’ll be no happier in the long-run when no one buys you a Christmas present as part of the ‘Secret Santa’ work scheme; think about it.
Try NOT to offend anyone
Its easily done; your concentration slips and you end up blurting out a seemingly innocuous statement which might go down well in your mate’s company, but inadvertently offends one slightly too sensitive work colleague. Remember who you are getting drunk with here; these people could be responsible for giving you a raise (or a redundancy package) in the future, so change those social filters when you are around them, think before you speak and if any thought pops into your head that you think may come across as ‘risqué’, then just leave it there. Again this may come across as condescending, but after a few units of alcohol, you won’t have your best thinking cap on to deal with ‘alternative’ topics of conversational interest. Don’t try giving a Ricky Gervais stand-up routine rendition, basically.
DON’T just talk about work
There is a time for discussing the nightmare of formatting Excel spreadsheets; this probably isn’t it. Just because you are with work mates, try not and bring work chat with you; after all, it’s what you’ve all come out of the office to get away from. Forming friendships with colleagues is obviously a good idea, bringing up topics of interest that extend beyond the four walls of your office and diffusing any tension that may have arisen. Again, try to not get too drunk and blurt out something stupid but don’t go too far the other way and start going off on one about the abysmal wastage of laser jet printer ink; leave it out!
DON’T dress down (too much)
You wouldn’t (hopefully) dress down at work, turning up in board shorts and pool sliders so don’t on work nights out! Sure it’s a different environment, more relaxed and more social but remember; these are still your work colleagues, with some who will inevitably be responsible for your annual bonus so it might be an idea to at least wear a shirt. Treat it as a work event but with considerably more alcohol and act accordingly; one misjudged wardrobe choice might not mean getting the sack but it won’t do your work reputation any good either.