Party Vocab & Avoiding Repetition: Christmas office parties

Read the text about Christmas office parties. Phrases about parties have been highlighted in bold and are explained below. There is also a section about avoiding repetition and don’t forget to do the short quiz.

Christmas is the main time in the UK for office parties to celebrate the end of the working year. They offer a great opportunity to let off some steam and have a good time with friends and colleagues from work. But how much fun should employees have at these events?

British office parties often involve alcohol and dancing which can lead to some rather undesired behaviour. According to statistics, around 2 in10 office workers are disciplined for inappropriate conduct in every company following the annual festive bash. Examples of unsuitable behaviour include use of foul language to co-workers and insulting bosses, as well as the infamous drunken photocopying. Sexual harassment complaints are also on the increase following office celebrations by male and female employees.

It is increasingly common for other employees to receive an abusive email sent during one of these end-of-year events. While the popularity of social media sites and mobile phones has resulted in countless embarrassing photos appearing all across public Facebook and Twitter pages. Unfortunately, the average boss takes a very dim view of such action as it can cause a loss of reputation and distrust and could possibly damage the entire company’s image. As a result, social media policies have begun to appear in company handbooks which when not followed incur disciplinary action or can even lead to redundancy and legal action.

One solution some companies have come up with is to discontinue office get-togethers all together, forcing Christmas revellers to celebrate in more suitable venues like bars and discos on their own time. Yet for many office staff, the Christmas party is something to look forward to all year and a tradition, as much as drinks on a Friday after work, so it doesn’t look like we’ve seen the back of it just yet.
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Vocabulary & Phrases about Parties

to let off some steam
To relax
to be disciplined
To be punished for doing something bad
Foul language
Swear words
Sexual harassment
Unwelcome verbal or physical behaviour
An abusive email
An email with aggressive language and/or insults
Embarrassing photos
Sensitive photos (people doing things they shouldn’t be doing in an office)
X takes a very dim view of something
X does not like certain behaviour
Loss of reputation
A good image/reputation is destroyed
Being unreliable
Social media policies
Rules about social media
to incur disciplinary action
Lead to punishment
When a job is cancelled and the person is
Legal action
The act of hiring a lawyer to solve a dispute
to come up with
To think of
to discontinue
To stop doing/producing something
All together
Christmas revellers
People celebrating Christmas
On their own time
When they are not being paid to work
Seen the back of it
It has finished and will not happen again


Avoiding Repetition: Don’t repeat yourself

The text uses different synonyms and related phrases so that it is not repetitive. Here is a list with their exact definitions.

People who you work with
People who you work with
People who work for someone else
Office staff
People who work in an office


Undesired behaviour
Doing things which are not correct in this situation
Inappropriate conduct
Doing things which are not correct in this situation
Unsuitable behaviour
Doing things which are not correct in this situation


Events where people come together to celebrate something
Festive bash
A party at Christmas time
Christmas party
A celebration during the Christmas period
Office celebrations
A party at the workplace
Office get-togethers
A party for staff
End-of-year events
A party in late December

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