Do company Christmas parties give you warm feelings -- the kind that come from warmed-over food, warmed-over music, and warmed-over office gossip? Mike Preolo has a better idea. He calls it the Scotty Awards, named after Alfred "Scotty" Scott, one of the principals of Glitterwrap, a manufacturer of wrapping paper and related products based in Rockaway, N.J.
Preolo invented the Scotties two years ago, when he was given the job of planning Glitterwrap's Christmas party. "I wanted something people would look forward to," he says. He liked the idea of an awards program, but not the kind that recognized a few overachievers and left everyone else demoralized. Instead he created award categories for the most "interesting and unusual behavior in the workplace." Ballots are filled out by the company's 50 employees, and Preolo tallies the results. Among past years' categories:
The I-Haven't-Had-Any-in-a-While Award -- for grumpy behavior
The I-Finally-Got-Some Award -- for personality improvement
The Frequent-Flier Award -- for first-class flirting while at your desk
The Mr. and Ms. Get-a-Life Award -- for overdedication to work
The God-Is-Fired-and-I-Got-the-Job Award -- for dedication to the conviction that you are always right
The Good-Little-Soldier Award -- for honesty, integrity, and bootlicking
"Occasionally, Scotties send a more serious message," says Preolo. "The person who received an award for outstanding dedication to personal phone calls is no longer with us. Then there was the woman who came to work dressed, but barely. She got a Scotty for Most Original Costume Design. But usually, it's just fun. And it sure beats a rented deejay at the local VFW."