With the festive season comes holiday parties, some of which may be held at your or your fiance's office. Either can bring up questions: what to wear? how to mingle? will I survive? These questions can be especially worrisome when you're the plus one.
But I'm here to tell you that, yes, you will survive, no matter how awkward you might think this particular get together will be. And you might even have fun if you follow a few simple rules.
Keep reading for four of our most important tips on how to not only survive your partner's office holiday party, but make a great impression and enjoy yourself (with or without a few cocktails).
1. Meet and Greet
You may know some of your fiance's office mates, but there will undoubtedly be a few your partner will introduce you to. First impressions are everything, and since the particular person won't know your personality, they'll judge you on what they see on the outside. The best way to impress a new person is to use body language: smile, maintain eye contact, and offer a firm, but friendly handshake.
Then there's the whole remembering his or her name. Like most people, you might hear it, but not really take it in, then fumble around in the future when you're confronted with the same person.
It's actually quite easy to remember names when you put your mind to it. A great way to do so is to repeat the person's name back to them after the introduction. For example, "It's great to meet you, Janice." You can also play a little word game to help you remember, like saying to yourself, Jan is nice = Janice.
2. Read the Room
Like individuals, offices have their own cultures and personalities. Would a law firm office party feel the same as a restaurant shindig? Hardly.
Get a gauge on the room by listening to the conversations people have. Are they formal or more relaxed? Knowing the office culture will guide you in what to talk, and definitely not, talk about.
3. Limit the Cocktail Consumption
This tip goes for both you and your partner. Sure, it helps to have a couple of "liquid courage" cocktails, but overdoing it could result in social media photos of the two of you (or just you) falling into the office Christmas tree. Awkward! It's best to keep it to a two drink minimum. If you feel a third coming on, have a glass of water beforehand and check in with your tolerance level.
4. Be Yourself
You don't have to put on a front or feel uncomfortable in order to impress your partner's colleagues. Ultimately, you should offer your genuine personality to those around you. People can pick up on vibes, and if they think you're faking, it could actually do the opposite of impress. Best to be yourself, have fun, and connect with people on a genuine level.