With sexual harassment reports making headlines worldwide, some end-of-year office parties are taking on a decidedly sober tone this year.
Companies are reconsidering how to approach rowdy workplace gatherings for fear they may encourage behaviour that could land both employers and employees in trouble. Experts also predict some staff may police their behaviour more than at previous work functions, or skip the party entirely.
Vox Media, a New York-based digital publisher, said there will not be an open bar at its holiday party this year. Instead, according to an internal memo the Huffington Post obtained, it will issue employees two drink tickets each and provide more food. “We recognise that even though alcohol isn’t always the reason for unprofessional behaviour, creating an environment that encourages overconsumption certainly contributes to it,” the report quotes the memo as saying.