Halloween is a big deal here at work. Each year the holiday brings out the camaraderie amongst team members—we decorate the office to the nines complete with fog machine, graveyard sounds, and spider webs and the day cultivates with a potluck lunch, pumpkin carving challenge and a costume contest.
But each year as my team anticipates All Hallows' Eve, we debate over whether we should participate, what we should dress up as, and even more importantly—is what we want to dress as appropriate?
After all, if you’re dressing up for Halloween at work you need to be in a completely different mind set, then if you are dressing up for friend’s costume party and being a department of mostly women, we almost always come up against the issue of a costume being too revealing or provocative (which for the record, I don’t even want to wear a costume that’s provocative to a party outside of the office).
So if you’re like us and are having trouble coming up with an appropriate costume to wear to work or are having a hard time getting into the spirit of the holiday here are some tips to help you survive Halloween at the workplace.
- Don’t be a party-pooper. I get that not everyone likes Halloween, so if you’re someone that doesn’t dress for the occasion, don’t sulk around all day, because Halloween is not your thing. Sign-up to bring something in for the occasion, like candy or offer to be the photographer for the day. That way you’ll still have participated and you don’t have to dress up in a silly costume that you’re annoyed by after five minutes.
- Don’t force HR to plan the party. Instead of sticking your HR department with the party planning duties—form a committee of those employees that want to help out. There are always team members from other departments besides Human Resources that have a knack for party planning. Added Bonus: the planning doesn’t use up all the resource time of one department.
- Don’t dress up as something creepy. And by creepy, I don’t mean a goblin or a ghoul, I mean like wearing exaggerated body parts…no one wants to think about their coworkers like that.
- Don’t wear something revealing. I know that the costumes out there for women may be appropriate for a “dance” club, but they’re certainly not appropriate for work. Be smart when you plan your costume, dressing up for Halloween at work is a privilege, not a right. Don’t ruin it for the others, by making a poor choice.
- Don’t go political. While there are some great topical costume opportunities here, such as plopping on a witch’s hat and going as Christine O’Donnell or protesting Halloween altogether as a tea partier—work is probably not the best place to be sharing your political agenda—that is unless you’re in politics.
So, does your workplace do it up Halloween, like we do? We’d love to hear all about it! Share your pictures and stories! Here are some pictures from our past Halloween celebrations for your enjoyment/inspiration.
Halloween 2010...coming soon!
UPDATE: Halloween 2010 Group Photo