Last week was the first time I ever heard Christmas compared to Marmite - but love it or hate it, it’s that’s time of year again.
The Champagne is flowing, the carols are playing, the party frocks are emerging, everyone in the City is kissing (each other), the whole of the banking world is on countdown until bonus day, and the fatal but fun-filled Christmas party is just around the corner.
There are some eager with anticipation for this day. Boys waiting for the ultimate moment to pursue the office totty, who they’ve had their eye for the last three weeks (or three months if they’re persistent), and the office party is their chance to pounce. After all, you can blame it on the booze if it all goes wrong. And then there are the girls fretting over which frock to wear as they hope to catch the eye of their City target. The glitz and glamour of the LBD will be sure to impress, and the night can’t come quick enough. It will be a night to remember.
But the Christmas party will be dreaded by others who already know their shenanigans will be talked about for months to come (and not in a good way). The ones who always have one tipple too many, and always go that little bit too far. They wake up the next morning cringing with embarrassment at the previous night's antics, and have “Oh my God” flashbacks when coming face to face with their colleagues. It’s a night to remember for a whole different reason. Your boss didn’t need to know what you thought of him at the beginning, you shouldn’t have needed to be put in a car by one of your colleagues, you didn’t need to wake up next to someone who usually occupies the desk opposite you. Nor is it a good idea to think you're the next Leona Lewis. You're not (most probably).
So before you indulge in too much bubbly, remember that these people are not your friends. They are your frenemies. When you’re up for a promotion against X in a few months time, they won’t hesitate in pointing out to the Boss that your professional behaviour can be dubious at times. All is fair in love and promotion.
So remember: no fatal errors. But do have a fabulous time.