Dear Aunty B,
Our well meaning marketing manager who organises our Christmas party always organises a surprise, which is usually fun. (Last year it was bowling.)
But this year she has organised a karaoke machine and we are going to sing Christmas carols.
I would rather stick pins under my toenails than spend an afternoon with my drunk staff next week singing Christmas carols to a karaoke machine.
Like you Aunty B, I too hate Ding Dong Merrily On High. I also hate Jingle Bells, Away in a Manger and I loathe Rumpertumtum! As for that carol that goes through the animal family… I mean why a partridge in a pear tree?? What does that mean?
Our Christmas party is next week. When I questioned my marketing manager this morning about why??? she says she wants to cheer things up and take our minds off difficult times.
Well, she has achieved her objective. For the next week, you won’t think about the miserable state of your balance sheet, bad debtors or that pre-Christmas board meeting. You will lie awake at night thinking up different ways to kill her!
Are you sure you have been a good boss this year? Because that is an extreme form of passive aggression by a staff member. I am sorry I can’t be more constructive but honestly, short of converting to Islam tomorrow and banning festivities on religious grounds, I am not sure what you can do.
But do something you MUST! Maybe you could ban karaoke under the pretence that staff need to be drunk to sing and this could lead to behaviour that might breach your good behaviour policy (which you can distribute this afternoon!) That’s an idea.
Go and tell your marketing manager that you have a better – and safer – idea. Tell her it is better if the singing takes place AFTER the Christmas party given the excitable types of behaviour that are known to occur after singing karaoke.
Then separate from the group on the way from the Christmas Party to the karaoke bar by answering your mobile and falling behind the group, while looking concerned. Then head straight to a bar for a quiet restorative and congratulatory drink on your own and leave your staff to party on without your grumpy presence. See? Everyone’s happy.
If the sadistic marketing manager still insists on karaoke at the Christmas party, there is nothing else to do but put your foot down.
JF, you have to look after yourself this year, and finishing the year singing Jingle Bells is not going to help your mental state.
Your Aunty B.