As December rolls around the invitations for end-of-year celebrations roll in, including the company Christmas party. This is a fantastic time to get out there, celebrate the year gone by and create solid, long-lasting business relationships.
So how can you make the most of these wonderful opportunities? Check out the seven tips below.
1. Do your homework
Knowing where you are going is crucial in anything in life but so is going with the flow. It really depends on what kind of party you are attending as to how much homework you do. Sometimes you can be over-prepared and stumble over your words, which does not have a place in a relaxed environment. Holiday parties are a good way to get to know people on a personal level and begin building a relationship based on mutual respect and friendship rather than strictly business. For example, if the party is your company Christmas party then you already know the guest list but think about how certain relationships could make your job easier. Consider other departments within the company and make a point of introducing yourself and getting to know some people outside your own department. When you do meet these people, forget about work and find out about them, their family, their hobbies and what makes them tick. You may be surprised! Read up on company news and news in general so you have something to talk about when you meet them. Most of all go with an open mind, and be curious and excited to meet new people.
2. Make an entrance
There are no hard and fast rules for the first thing to do upon entering a party and some people find the entrance quite stressful. The best thing you can do is take a few minutes to take stock and observe your surroundings. I would tend to head for the host as it always polite to say hello and thank them for the invitation. Often when you do this, the host will introduce you to whomever they are speaking to so you would have your first conversation right there.
3. Lend a hand
If you don’t know many people at the party a great idea is to pick up a plate of food and start handing it around. This is a great way to meet people and to have conversations with many. It also gives you a reason to move on as you have to serve other hungry guests! You could equally bring your camera and take photos throughout the night.