The year is almost over and management is throwing a party to thank employees for their hard work. How you handle yourself, though, can affect your career--positively or negatively. According to Jayna Cooke, CEO of event space search engine Eventup, a handful of screw-ups definitely need to be on your "do not do" list.

Overdrinking

Everybody knows alcohol lowers a person's inhibitions, but when it comes to your work relationships reticence is key. In other words, the filter that keeps you from saying or doing stupid things needs to be fully functioning. So, before even showing up make a contract with yourself regarding how many drinks you'll have. A wise threshold for any work event: Two.

Dressing Inappropriately

When you have to dress conservatively for work it can be tempting to show a different side of yourself when a party is involved. "Make sure it's not too tight or too short or too low," Cooke says. "Have fun--put fun jewelry on but definitely try not to be inappropriate with it."

Talking About Work

An office party is not the time to iron out company problems. "The point of a holiday party is that you get outside of your work realm and try to understand and get to know everybody better on a more personal level," she says.

Flirting With a Coworker

A holiday party is definitely not the right time or place for this kind of behavior. "Everybody else can see it," she says.

Gossiping

It's ugly any time of the year, but especially when everyone is trying to have a good time. "It's just an easy way to look bad," she says. "It's not appropriate [and] it's not nice."

Ingratitude

A holiday party is expensive and somebody put a lot of work into planning it. Find the planner as well as your boss and thank them. "If you do it you could really stand out," she says. "Even if it's terrible."

Published on: Dec 8, 2014