Top 5 Horrible Holiday Party Mistakes to Avoid at Your Year-End Event!

December 3, 2014

Ho, ho, …uh-oh! It’s that time of year again; the time when companies gather to celebrate the year’s achievements together. Year-end celebrations often include some team-building fun along with a little letting loose, and unfortunately sometimes things can get a little too loose for their own good.


Read on for Our Top 5 Horrible Holiday Party Mistakes – and some tips as to how you can avoid them!

The Beverage Blunders: We all know it’s going to happen. Someone’s going to drink a little too much egg nog and make a fool of themselves. Hopefully there’s no stumbling, and definitely no driving! A little embarrassing karaoke never hurt anyone, though! It is supposed to be an event to remember, am I right!?

How to avoid it: supply each employee with a limited number of drink tickets, and once the tickets are gone, the drinks no longer get poured. What happens at the after party is up to the individual!

The Hostess with the Mostest (To Clean Up): A lot of smaller companies will host their holiday soirees right in their homes. This is a great way to save money and make it a very personal affair, but what about that nice young staff member who spills a glass of red all over your luxe white carpet? Not so great, for you or for her!

How to avoid it: Keep the party offsite. It may cost you a little more, but in the end it will be worth it. Less liability, you can leave whenever you want to, and someone else has to do the prep and clean up!

Inside Jokes that Exclude Half the Crowd: Many holiday parties are opened up to the employee and their significant other. While this is a great time to extend thanks to families, you might leave them sitting at their table in a zone of “huh?” while you crack joke after joke about company happenings, leaving them with a lasting impression of LAME-O.

How to avoid it: Keep your year-end event open to employees only. This gives you more budget to spend on awards, giveaways, and entertainment, as well as keep ALL of the crowd engaged. 

Entertainment FAIL. So the comedian you hired for your event came out with all the wrong (RAW) material?? Yikes!

How to avoid it: Ask for a script or set list from your hired entertainment. Better yet, if you can catch their act in action before the event, do it. Never take someone else’s word about the credibility of an entertainment act.

Speeches Gone Awry. Whether you’re the President of the company setting the stage for an atmosphere of thanks and gratitude, or an award recipient with an acceptance speech, the power of the live microphone can be overwhelming. Stumbling over words, sayings things you really wish you hadn’t, or making a REALLY BAD joke, are all possibilities if you’re not prepared.

How to avoid it: First, check out our free Award Presentation Guide to help if you’re planning on presenting awards at your next event! Second, unless it’s a lifetime achievement or retirement award, I’d recommend not giving your honorees the mic. Most of the time they’ll thank you for this. 

  Download Award Presentation Guide

As a team member since 2005, Falon has worn just about every hat the 'ville has to offer. She's seen both sides of working life — as an employee and as a manager — so if it sounds like she knows what she's talking about, we're pretty sure that's why. When she's not juggling between the IDville and Baudville brands, she's been known to whip up a mean diorama - just like that!

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