Don't Skip the Picnic!
Often work activities take place away from brick and mortar buildings. The company sponsored picnic is a business event where the same workplace etiquette applies. It is not just a chance to eat and show your sport prowess. It should be treated as a work event, where workplace etiquette must be employed. Picnics suggest relaxation and fun but don't do too much of either.
The picnic is not the time to become caviler about your decorum. How you conduct yourself, and how your family conducts themselves can help or derail your career. Your goal for any company event should be to make sure your reputation remains intact.
Here are some tips to make the company picnic an event to look forward to attending.
Resist the urge to skip the event. Arrive no later than 30 minutes after the start time. Stay awhile, at least an hour. You want to be seen. Managers should expect to spend most of the day. Showing up shows that you are a team player. Please, no uninvited guests. You are not the host.
Dress to impress
Picnic doesn't mean sloppy. Khakis or jeans for men. Anything with holes is not welcome. Graphic tees are a no-no at the company picnic. Remember, this is a business event. Plain round neck colored shirts, collared shirts, or polo shirts are always safe. Stay away from grey, it shows sweat.
Yard shoes flip flops and grungy tennis shoes are not allowed at the company picnic. Gentlemen, if you must show your feet, please get a pedicure first.
Picnic doesn't mean club or cocktail attire. Ladies, shorts appropriate for music videos are not to be worn to the company picnic. Bermuda shorts, capris, walking shorts and conservative sundresses are a much safer choice. Backless, halter tops, tops that expose your midriff, are not good choices either.
That cute club top with the iridescent sequins doesn't want to attend the company picnic. Club wear is never appropriate for any business sponsored event. The company picnic is not the place for trends.
Playing games is traditionally a component of most company picnics. Wearing flip flops, four inch wedges and heels of any size make you unavailable to participate. Join in. Team play is good team building for companies. Be a part of the activities. Remember participation is required. Don't be an onlooker.
Professional women need to remember that showing too much skin may impact your credibility. Your reputation needs to remain intact. Make sure your clothing fits properly, is not worn, stained or dirty. Visuals leave a lasting impression.
Let them know the conduct that you expect. Encourage your children to participate in the games and activities.Your family's social skills will be on display. Picnics still require manners. Learning to wait their turn, saying thank you and please, and playing fairly will increase your professional image.
Introduce your family. Make sure your children know how to shake hands. Teaching children to shake hands allows them to control their personal space.
The company picnic is a great networking opportunity. Introduce yourself to colleagues you don't know. Volunteer, play the games. Refrain from shop talk.
Someone is listening
Everyone from C-level to custodial staff will be present. Some topics are always taboo regardless of the setting. Politics, religion, sex, your health, your parent's health, money problems and tasteless jokes are never appropriate. Avoid gossip and negativity.
Someone is watching
Avoid alcohol. Avoiding alcohol will help you maintain appropriate boundaries, both verbal and physical.
Someone is taking attendance.
Make sure that key personnel know that you are present.
Thank the organizers. Send a thank you note.