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4 Office X-Mas Party Strategists

It’s that time of year again, and if you work in an office it probably means you’re either anticipating – or dreading – the annual office Christmas party. Was it Lincoln who said you can’t please all the people all the time? Well, if it was, he very well may have been talking about office parties. There is just no way to win this battle. Offices are basically a mismatched collection of people who should not be hanging out together at parties. But, when it’s time to celebrate, by gum, that’s what we’re gonna do – even if we have to watch Ted take another header into the punchbowl while Sally shrieks “What’s Love Got to Do with It” into the PA microphone. Of course, prior to the party the office is abuzz with talk of how to avert these kinds of disasters. Every once in a while a hero emerges with a masterful plan that guarantees fun for all … but 99% of the time the planning falls to one of these: <ul style="list-style-type: none;"> <li><strong>1.       </strong><strong>The Dictator  </strong></li> </ul> Amazingly, this kind of situation is not always as bad as it sounds. Under a party dictatorship, you just march in to the designated space, get your slice of cake and your cup of punch, and “mingle.” Or, maybe you just go back to your desk. The activities, if there are any, are regimented, familiar and non-negotiable. Everyone may be miserable, but at least they’re in lockstep – <em>equal misery for all!</em> <ul style="list-style-type: none;"> <li><strong>2.      </strong><strong>The Democrat</strong></li> </ul> This party planner respects the vote. She or he will poll coworkers to get ideas on what to do, make a list of the generally accepted options, and then give the mob its chance to self-govern. Much like with any democratic process, this approach often results in extremes: super awesome … or epic failure. The obvious beauty of the Democrat’s plan is that said planner is absolved from the responsibility of potential failure. The people have spoken and they should – <em>should</em> – accept the outcome without rancor having had a fair chance to lobby their favored party plan. Trapped in a karaoke bar listening to shredded Garth Brooks lyrics? You should’ve canvassed harder. <ul style="list-style-type: none;"> <li><strong>3.      </strong><strong>The Volunteer</strong></li> </ul> Sometimes also referred to as the “Do-Gooder,” this organizer pushes for all party funds (and time) to be dedicated to a higher cause than just merely having fun. How indulgent! How wasteful! How … <em>selfish</em>. By the time the Volunteer climbs down from the soapbox, you feel ashamed for every party you ever attended. Methods and ideology aside, the Do-Gooder has a caring heart and wants to do what’s right. So, instead of getting cake and punch you get to help other people. And, while everyone should think this is <em>good</em>, only some will see it as <em>fun</em>. <strong> </strong> <ul style="list-style-type: none;"> <li><strong>4.      </strong><strong>The Lone Wolf</strong></li> </ul> How the Lone Wolf gets put in charge of getting people together is a mystery, but it does happen; maybe because he or she is so adrift from office politics and communication in general that losing the game “Not It” is assured. Once rallied, however, the Lone Wolf can make some surprising moves. There’s usually an initial push of, “Everybody should just do what they want,” that slowly fades into, “If I’m in charge then we’re doing something <em>cool</em>.” The next thing you know, Mary from customer service is showering the mail boy in a brutal storm of paintballs. <a href="http://www.atgstores.com/" target="_blank">ATGStores.com</a> is happy to set the bar high when it comes to office fun, and we hope your office Christmas party is one to remember – for good reasons.
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