Make the most of a toned-down party.
Q: My office is having a party on a Thursday night, and I’m not sure how to act/dress. Of course this will be a more conservative party, but it’s still a party, right?
A: Make sure to dress nicely and neutrally. As much as everyone loves a reindeer sweater, there is a time and a place. It's probably safer to stay with professional attire. Wearing something classic and tasteful will leave a much better impression than the aforementioned reindeer sweater or the overtly sexual or outrageous outfit.
Mingling is essential if these parties are meant to be anything other than an exercise in awkwardness. Make a sincere effort to break out of your shell and get to know a couple of people. This can help your organization run more smoothly in general, and the conversations you have could make great networking opportunities. Not to mention that having the mayor on speed-dial might prove useful one day.
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