Office Christmas parties have become notorious for excessive drinking and sometimes scandalous behaviour – but how much of this is true? New research into employee behaviour at office Christmas parties has revealed how various sectors behave, and also how much of this behaviour makes its way onto social media.

At past office Christmas parties, 1 in 10 UK employees have admitted drinking so much alcohol that they couldn’t turn up for work the next day.

Spotting an opportunity to get close to colleagues – 1 in 10 British workers are planning on telling a co-worker they like them at this year’s office Christmas party.

With 1 in 5 UK employees expecting to embarrass themselves this year, 15% have admitted that they’re going to change their Facebook settings so that they have to approve a ‘tag’ in a status or a picture.

This is perhaps a good idea for the property sector – with 1 in 5 property employees admitting that they’ve had an argument with their other half following a picture or status they’ve been tagged in on Facebook at an office Christmas party.

The research – which breaks down by eight sectors – found that the property sector seem the most likely to find themselves in trouble following Christmas party antics.

1 in 10 property employees have received a written or verbal warning following their behaviour at an office Christmas party, and a shocking 8% have even been fired!

The travel sector were found to be the most likely to be amorous at office Christmas parties – with a massive 40% of travel employees admitting they’ve flirted with a work colleague and almost 42% admitting they’ve kissed a co-worker at the office Christmas party.

1 in 4 travel employees have waited until the office Christmas party to tell a colleague they like them, and almost 1 in 4 admitted to saying something inappropriate to a work colleague that they’ve regretted the next day.

A worried 10% of travel employees aren’t even going to their work Christmas party this year because they don’t want to do something embarrassing.

An ashamed 14% of energy & utilities employees admitted they have been dumped by their other half following their behaviour at an office Christmas party, compared to just a 4% all-sector average.

A further 14% of energy & utilities employees are going to use the office Christmas party this year to confront a colleague or tell them they don’t like them.

A well behaved 36% of marketing & advertising employees are on target to be the most well behaved at their party this year, stating they’re going to drink much less alcohol than the year before to avoid embarrassment.

With the festive party season coming up, employers are preparing for how to deal with inappropriate behaviour. Whilst the office party is likely to take place outside of work hours, with it being a work event – work policies still apply. This guide advises employers on how to handle employee behaviour at work events and online.

Key points again:

  • Almost 30% of UK employees have flirted with a work colleague at an office Christmas party.

  • Over 1 in 4 have kissed a colleague at the festive work event.

  • 1 in 5 fully expect they’ll do or say something embarrassing at this year’s office Christmas party.

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