The day you stop believing in Santa Claus is when you start getting clothes for Christmas.
Speaking of Christmas, its amazing how many people ruin their careers at company Christmas parties.
Years ago I was an executive attending our annual Christmas party. Everything was going well. Great food, great music, a very fun environment. There was alcohol as well. Now some people can handle free alcohol while others should stay home just to ensure they are still employed on Monday morning.
On this particular event, a young man with a promising career drank way too much and was headed to the men’s room. To get there, you had to go up an incline with diners below on either side. This young man didn’t quite make it to the restroom and instead leaned over the rail and barfed all over the owner’s daughter’s head.
That didn’t set well with either of these people and all of those who were in close proximity. Yeah, time to sleep it off and put out some resumes.
I’ve witnessed others who, through the magic of liquid courage, told off people who would directly impact their growth within the company. Others have thrown caution to the wind with regard to their marriages, only to lose their jobs and marriages. Best to keep the rule of moderation in play at these events.
Spouses or dates can also put you at risk, so if you’re married to, or dating a loose cannon, it’s probably best to make some sort of excuse and leave the person at home.
As a comedian, I’ve entertained at hundreds of Christmas parties. Most are really great. The money is good and so is the food. Most companies choose such parties to reward their employees for a job well done.
One party I did was just the opposite. Instead of a raffle, which is very common at these gatherings, this particular company did things backwards. The employees chipped in and bought the owners a very nice grandfather clock. Then they took turns talking about how much they loved working for the company, although it was obvious they were being less than truthful. They were all afraid of losing their jobs. It was the worst case of sucking up I’ve ever seen.
When I got up to perform, I mentioned what a beautiful clock they had given to the owners and that the owners must have taken really good care of them, too. Then I started talking about how buying gifts can tell you a lot about the giver and how they feel about you. I used the popcorn tins with the three compartments in them as an example of getting something for someone who they feel obligated to buy for but don’t really care about.
As I said that, the employees began laughing so hard that some of them fell off of their chairs. I asked what was so funny, and one of the employees said, “That’s what they gave us”! Oops. I was not invited back the next year. Luckily, they had paid me prior to the show and first thing Monday morning I was at their bank cashing the check.