Seven People You're Guaranteed To See At Your Company Party
Your Email Buddy From Accounting/IT/Some Other Department
What began as a problem you needed resolved eventually became a Slack-based friendship, and now you basically spend the workday arguing with this guy about football and when exactly Lil۪ Wayne got bad. That doesn۪t mean your online social interactions are going to translate well in real life. In fact, your conversation is going to be both of you asking each other how۪s it going? until the ice in your cup melts. Your friendship works in online chats and that۪s fine. You۪ll only recognize him from the company directory, anyway. Stick with a nod or a raised cup when you spot each other, and keep it moving.
The Holiday Fanatic
You may not know her personally, but you know her cube, which becomes a decoration dumpster fire at every major holiday. She goes around asking people if they want their workspace decorated, too. No thanks, but you۪ll take two of those Christmas tree cookies. Okay, three. She has spent the evening pre-gaming in a way only she knows how: making reindeer antler headbands as party favors and choosing the best ugly sweater. She۪s harmless. Tonight, she۪s going to ask you a million times if you۪re enjoying yourself. Always say yes because once she knows you۪re having a good time, she۪ll leave you alone. For another hour.
At the beginning of the night, he۪ll be in the corner wondering if this party is within the budget because he saw the books from last quarter, and he۪s not too happy with Susan for promising it wouldn۪'t be as big as last year۪s. The office holiday party is a good time to introduce yourself, though, and wow him with the stuff you memorized from the company website or how your department has been killing it lately. But don۪t hog all his time; he can spot a kiss-ass, compliment his or her significant other, be polite, make a joke and move on. Let him think the suck-up is the other employee who is circling and anxiously waiting for you to end your conversation, so he can step in.
The Social Media Documentarian
Dedicated to making sure your picture ends up somewhere you۪d rather it not be, the social media documentarian will be walking around the room with his or her iPhone, coercing people into taking a selfie. She۪s mastered all her good angles, so she doesn۪t care that you۪re too drunk to even know where to look or that you weren۪t ready for the photo. Too bad, you۪re on Snapchat for the next twenty-four hours or tagged on Facebook. Avoid her at all costs or risk becoming next week۪s meme.
The Office Hermit
At first, you۪ll think this person is a crasher because you۪ve never seen him before. Maybe you۪ll nudge your manager and ask if you need to call security. She۪ll laugh and tell you it۪s all good, it۪s just the office hermit. He۪s great at his job and he likes working there, but he just doesn۪t want to talk to any of you. No, seriously, he doesn۪t want to join your fantasy team or even know your name. Don۪t CC him on happy hour emails ever, either. He۪s a strong proponent of keeping work and life separate. He only comes to mandatory meetings or when an email says attendance at an event is strongly encouraged, which is why the only thing he does all night is stuff cookies in his pockets and fill his flask. Whether or not he may have a dead body in his trunk or also moonlights as the local mall Santa is probably irrelevant. Probably.
He hasn۪t been to a party he couldn۪t ruin. When he۪'s not dancing badly to all the Top 40 songs he keeps asking the DJ to play, he۪s screaming "SHOTS!" every time he takes one. He۪ll also be standing by the exit booing coworkers for leaving after a couple hours (he۪s first on The Hermit۪s shit list). Don۪t be tempted to get high with him in the bathroom a few floors down when he offers. By the end of the night, he۪ll be slumped in the elevator asking where the after-party is. Like anyone۪s going to tell him anyway.
Your Work Wife/Bro
"Why is the food so bad?" "Dammit, the cute girl from sales has a boyfriend?" "Can I call in sick on Monday?" Finally, you can ask these things out loud once your work friend gets there. It will be like any other time you two are together and giving each other looks in reaction to your coworkers, but with free booze. So yeah, not too shabby.