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"Party Time "
I recently won an office party for 50 + individuals (which would cover my entire organization) from a friendly, local radio station. The party is/was to be luncheon at a catering facility located ten minutes from our office with free appetizers, entrees, and beverages for my entire organization. Everyone was really excited about it, including the business manager, until recently. A couple of weeks go by after winning the prize and I am told by our business manager that it isn't a good idea to have this office party because it would require everyone on-site to travel 10 minutes offsite during working hours. I worked with the catering facility to alter arrangements. Very kindly, they agreed have the office party after working hours, but still our business manager resists on even having the office party. I am starting to think that some office politics are involved. Do you have any ideas on why this office party might be viewed as a bad idea by the business manger?
Office Party Winner
Dear Office Party Winner,
I don't know what your business manager is thinking. The first rule in dealing with Office Politics is to be direct if you have an issue with someone. That is my advice to you.
Ask your business manager for an appointment. Tell him/her that you are feeling upset that he/she seems to be negative about the party and you want to talk it out. Be prepared to make a clear case for the benefits of the party. Think about the concerns he/she may have, but don't look at this as an argument to be won. Be prepared to hear his/her concerns. If you can address them, suggest how.
But listen too for his/her underlying interest in this situation. He/she may be reluctant to name the problem, but you might pick it up. If, for instance, he/she is concerned that it is you who will get credit for the party, offer a suggestion as to how you can make it more of a company event. Try to address the business managers real concern by finding a way to work together to come up with a creative resolution.
You need to be prepared, however, for the business manager to exercise his/her prerogative to just say no. If that is the case you need to accept that or risk a confrontation by going ahead without her/his support.
Thanks for writing,
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