Halloween is a fun time and a great opportunity to work on team building or include your employees’ families. Halloween parties, costume competitions and opening up the office to nearby trick-or-treaters are all fun activities that you can offer your employees and/or their families, but there are certain ways to go about these activities to avoid a mishap.
- Set expectations for costumes. Unfortunately, many adult costumes are designed to be racy, offensive or both. Set clear expectations for your employees that they are to dress in a way that is appropriate for the workplace. No more skin should be showing on Halloween than any other day, and no costume should be worn that is designed to offend any religious or ethnic groups. In addition, it’s a good idea to put a ban on fake weapons, just to be safe.
- Lose the booze. Or, if you do serve alcohol, perhaps implement a drink limit. Costumes (you know someone will break rule #1) and booze are a recipe for harassment complaints. Better to not take any chances with inappropriate behavior.
- Make events optional. Some employees may not celebrate Halloween due to personal or religious reasons. Others may just want to focus on their work. Don’t pressure employees to show up or participate in events, or else you are creating a setting of hostility. Besides, you don’t want any poopers bringing your party down.
- Bring in the family. An easy way to alleviate risks of many of these problems is to host a party for employees and their families. Knowing this, employees are more likely to dress appropriately and less likely to drink too much. You can set up trick-or-treat stations in each office for kids or host a variety of games and refreshments in a common area. A separate costume contest can be held for children than for employees.
How do you celebrate Halloween in your office? Share in the comments below.