Interacting at Holiday Parties

Well... it's that time of year, the Holiday party season is upon us. At this time of year interacting with people with tons of personalities is somewhat of a challenge. Having mundane conversations about children and the weather can get a little daunting. But, does it have to be? Experts say that the most successful people are the people that can "read a room" and realize who needs to be talked to and in what way.

Realizing this ideology on communication is never an easy task. However, in this post we will break down five different personality types and how to communicate with each person at the party in a way that is meaningful and not boring. Now to begin...

  • The Quiet Loner- At every holiday event, there is always one person in the corner quietly sipping their egg-nog and ignoring everyone at the party This personality is the first we are going to discuss because it is actually the personality trait that needs the most attention. First off, the concept of just walking up to the person might cause them to feel uncomfortable and their guard will surely go up! So, a suggestion is to walk over near them and stare at either a piece of art or decoration and make a comment about it. This will allow them to counter your statement without them feeling on-guard or uneasy. After this initial conversation begins, the next step is to begin by discussing things that might interest that person. Look on their person, if they are wearing a pen of some sort or have a particular pair of shoes on or something, this is the moment to make a comment. Leading with a compliment is the best way to cause a persons guard to drop and feel more comfortable with you. Doing this task will surely make for a pleasant conversation and make the person feel included even though they were the "quiet loner."
  • The Over-Indulged- For most holiday events there is always some sort of beverage that will cause the quiet girl in the HR department to go a little crazy, but hey, it is the holidays after all. This is the moment for you to slip in and take care of that person to make sure they do not say or do anything they will regret the next day. Being on your toes and paying attention to what is happening and the flow of the party is key to the overall success of you being at the event. Being the dependable employee or co-worker is a perfect trait to have.
  • The Blowhard- Holiday parties can sometimes bring out the worst in people. However, as with any event there is always that one guy that tries to make it their own "show". This person must be stopped.... However, that discussion will be saved for another blog post. The best way to communicate with this person is to just allow them to talk about themselves. I know it is difficult, but it's better than you ending up in jail for getting too "physical" with Sargent Blowhard. Try to counter some of his comments with your own and if he does not want to listen walk away.
  • The Flirt- Well this is not just at holiday parties, but pretty much at every imaginable event. Whether the person is a man or a woman, the flirt can be the most difficult to communicate with. Hey, either you're single and ready to mingle and enjoy the flirting or you're not and just have to be polite. Either way, do not take advantage of the situation. Either politely walk away from the flirt or indulge them. The choice is yours, but remember the holiday party is just one night and this decision could shape the rest of your future.
  • The Boss- With anything in business, there is always someone that you have to answer to and the holiday party is no exception! The boss is the man or woman that either is in charge of your career or in charge of the party. Both are important and both should be recognized. After all, it is the one time of year where thank yous are mandatory and cheer is a must! Make the host or hostess of the event feel important, make your boss feel valued and most of all make sure you let them know it. This can be done through a toast or a simple handshake letting them know their value to your life.

Now that these have been discussed and labeled. I hope you truly take into account all of these options and that you think about consequences as well. Oh, do not forget, it is a party DRESS YOUR BEST!

-James R. Bower Jr. "Jimmy"


  • Susan Jones

    Good advice for many situations, James!

  • al gorman

    Great commentary ❗️

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