Season’s Greetings from everyone at TerraCycle! Holidays are time to eat, drink and be merry so we thought we should share dos and don’ts for office holiday parties with details about ours. Some of these general guidelines go without saying for some, but helpful for anyone who may be attending their first office holiday party, like me, this year.

If you attend your office party, do spend at least 30 minutes at the party for appearances. This is true whether you’re part of the senior staff or an intern. The holiday party is a chance to socialize with your co-workers and you may make new friends in other departments.

Do dress up, but not like a Christmas tree. Be cautious when you’re picking out your attire for the office party, and stay away from anything too revealing or flashy. These are your co-workers so air on the side of modesty when dressing up.

Don’t go overboard on the wine or beer. Make sure you’re eating and drinking something non-alcoholic to supplement any alcohol intake.

Do hire a caterer if possible to eliminate the stress of cooking if you are having the office party at someone’s home or the office itself. Our party was catered by Zake’s Cakes & Cafe and we had grilled flank steak salad; mushrooms stuffed with feta and spinach and Saigon rolls with chicken, shrimp & dipping sauce. For dessert, we had a beautiful and delicious Bûche de Noël and Classic Red Velvet Cake filled with cream cheese mousse, topped with smooth cream cheese icing.

Do keep one hand free during the night so that you can offer handshakes. And do keep your drink in your left hand, so you are not offering people a frosty, wet hand.

Do talk to the interns. As I said, this was my first office party and it wasn’t hard to spot the other interns who stood awkwardly among the large crowd.

Don’t talk ill about co-workers, clients, or your boss. No one wants to unexpectedly walk up to a scrooge and listen to negative opinions or complaints. Keep the conversation light and friendly. Also avoid any talk about politics or religion, it almost never goes well.

Do bring a gift that adheres with the spending limit or theme if there is a gift exchange. Feel free to try a DIY craft.

Do recycle plastic cups, plates and bottles and cans. If you participate in the Brigade programs, the office holiday party is a wonderful time to collect items to send in.

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