Corporate holiday parties making a comeback

Put on your party hat and get ready for some holiday joy.

A new survey from the National Association of Catering Executives shows that 52 percent of those queried believe the corporate holiday party will make a comeback this year. That’s 22 points higher than last year, when only 30 percent said the holiday party would rebound.

Of those who took the survey, 44 percent said that they are seeing an increase in clients planning holiday parties this year, whereas last year that figure was only 18 percent.

“As we have been saying for several years, the holiday or end of year party was bound to come back,” said Bonnie Fedchock, executive director of the National Association for Catering Executives, in a statement. “These events serve a valuable function, in terms of increasing or maintaining employee morale, providing a sense of continuity, and reward for hard work over the course of the year. They don’t have to be extravagant. We are not surprised to see more companies holding them once again.”

I agree that these parties serve a valuable function. They’re a good way for employees to interact when not obligated to focus on the day’s tasks. You don’t have to wear your work clothes, or your work shoes, or your work expression.

I’ve heard people in the past say they don’t go to office events and parties because they see enough of their co-workers during the week. Why talk to them any more than you have to?

Well, it’s possible that you might see your co-workers in a different light after spending some time with them at a holiday party. Maybe the quiet ones will liven up after a few drinks. Maybe you’ll realize your boss is a lot more fun than you thought.

And if you end up having a good time and befriending some fellow employees, work might become more enjoyable too, and that’s usually not a bad thing.

So, since if this survey is on the mark and there will be more holiday joy in offices this year, I’d recommend at least stopping by at your holiday party. Really, what have you got to lose? If anything, you’ll probably get some free food and drinks out of it.

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