There are a million people out there telling you why you shouldn’t serve alcohol at a holiday party, but only one HR expert who will tell you that it’s okay.
Your office holiday party sucks without alcohol. People are boring, morale is low, and no one has anything to talk about except work – and maybe this year’s corporate holiday cards.
You know what fixes that? Boxed wine.
You know what else? Two drink tickets to a bar with real liquor.
Lawyers and churchwomen will tell you that alcohol is a path towards litigation and sin. Yes, an open bar can cause trouble. (Case in point? My cousin’s wedding in 1995. I might still be drunk.) But in the right circumstances, alcohol is a path towards loosening up and chilling the hell out.
And there’s nothing worse than working for an oppressive, paternalistic company — except for an oppressive, paternalistic company that doesn’t serve alcohol at a holiday party.
The real war on Christmas isn’t from hippie liberals and lesbian feminists with tattoos. It’s from HR departments who don’t trust their employees, don’t know enough about the law to worry about the right things, and fear the concept of ‘beer’ at an adult party.
Serve alcohol at your holiday party. And if someone (e.g., Matthew from IT) acts like an idiot, hold him responsible.
There you go.