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Is HR really the Grinch?

We’re not, not really. At the HR Dept Ringwood we love the Christmas Spirit. What we don’t love is the inevitable problems that arise when people indulge in too much Christmas spirit.

Starting with the office Christmas Party; should be a time of joy and celebrating the past year right? Well, not so much for HR. We’ve learnt the hard way that Christmas is often for everyone else not HR. As HR you are expected to fix every little problem. “The starter is seafood and Jane is allergic.” “Susan is crying in the toilet and won’t come out.” “You need to take Brian’s keys off him as he is way to drunk to drive home.” And that’s all before dinner’s even served!  And then come the office romances and the practical jokes – it all seems like harmless fun until Monday when you can’t meet each other’s eyes or there’s a hotline to the HR office as complaints come in thick and fast!

We don’t want to be the “fun police”, we actually want to relax and celebrate the year with our colleagues, rather than keeping our eyes and ears to the ground ready to catch the first drunk and whisk them away in a taxi before their boss sees. There’s some simple solutions, and it starts with ensuring your employees are aware of acceptable behaviours, have safe options for getting home from events, are provided with enough food, limited free alcohol, and that there are allocated people (who are sober) to supervise the event and know how to appropriately manage any issues that do arise.

To all our corporate HR colleagues – we hope you get your workplaces through the celebrations without a loss of licence, sexual harassment claim or any grievous bodily harm. And better yet, we hope you get to relax too and celebrate another year of hard work. Merry Christmas!