White elephant gifts in the office, a helpful guide to not losing your job at the office Christmas party

I know, I know. You desperately want to give the Donald Trump shaped troll doll (complete with giant, fuzzy, yellow hair!) to the lone Republican in your office during the Secret Santa gift exchange. It would be hi-lar-ious, you tell yourself as your plop it into your Amazon cart.

It’s not. Don’t do it. Back away from the keyboard. Quickly.

The office Christmas party and gift exchange/ white elephant game, can be a hoot. It can also be the fastest way to win a one-way ticket to the HR office.

Let’s make a short checklist, shall we?

Do you work at:

Happy Thanksgiving! Be careful on the roads, in your kitchen and avoid politics at all costs!

Thanksgiving can be filled with love and delight.

It can also be the trickiest time of year to gather the entire extended gang around the table. Not to mention, possibly one of the most dangerous days of the year.

The National Fire Protection Association says the chances of a cooking-related fire increase nearly 250 percent on Thanksgiving. Almost half of Thanksgiving Day fires occur from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. when meals are being prepared and the cooks may be distracted by the guests and the sheer amount of food that needs to be tended to.

Halloween at the Office: Good Taste Over Ghoulish Wins

Political jokes, risqué costumes and grotesque props – oh my!

Halloween celebrated in bad taste at the office is the scariest ghoul you may encounter this season.

Halloween can be really fun in the workplace. We’ve all entered an office or store where the employees have banded together to create a whimsical group costume that makes their customers smile or even giggle.

But we’ve all also entered the scariest of haunts, the workplace that leaves its employees to their own devices on this potentially dangerous holiday.

Tips for shopping for co-workers

Last year Americans reported spending an average of $983 for holiday gifts, an increase of $54 from the previous year, according to American Research Group, Inc.

The recipient receiving the smallest percentage of that amount, other surveys suggest, is the gift givers’ co-workers or employer. Last year the Deseret News reported that 73 percent of respondents in a recent survey said they spent less than $20 on a gift for a co-worker or boss.

Compare that to 30.1 percent surveyed who planned to spend up to $100 on a loved one.

Need a holiday job? Try a movie theater

Need a holiday job but the idea of dealing with the holiday shopping crowd makes you cringe?

Try applying at a movie theater instead.

The holiday season is one of the hottest seasons for blockbusters to hit theaters, which means crowds will increase and theaters will be hiring extra help.

Visit any online job search engine and you will find plentiful movie theater jobs in every state across the nation. Positions are available in ticket sales, concessions, cleaning crew and security.

The holiday potluck – dreadful or dazzling

By Allison Perkins

Holiday potlucks in the breakroom are coming, are you ready?

I’ve learned there are two types. First, everyone brings a dish and the smorgasbord sits in the breakroom and is visited by one or two people at a time since everyone is so busy typing away to get done in time to leave for vacation.

Second, the entire office shuts down and gathers for fellowship around the food which can be a hoot at the right companies or uncomfortable at best.

Enjoy Winter Break, Rather Than Stress Over Grades

By Jenna Moede

Winter break and the time for relaxing and resetting has finally arrived. I feel so excited for a break this year, and I can’t wait to re-energize for the New Year.  

During this time of year, as an undergrad student, getting the most out of my time off felt critical because I finally had a second to enjoy life without school. After my last final every semester, I sold my books and organized my notes that I would need later on in college. Once I had gone through my school stuff, I put everything away where I could forget about it.

Seasonal Work May Be Limited This Year

Analysts expect holiday sales to be solid. But retailers, they say, won’t be hiring many extra employees to manage the flow of customers.

Every fall Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc., a global outplacement consultancy, releases a holiday hiring outlook. This year the firm expects retailers to hire only the same amount of staff as last year, roughly 755,000 nationwide from October to December.

For comparison, the largest holiday hiring boom came in 1999 when retailers hired an extra 850,000 to manage the gift shopping crowds.

Still Need to Shop? Stores are Open!

And you thought Black Friday shopping was getting out of hand.

This holiday season, retailers are pushing the envelope and many stores will be open 24 hours during the last push before Christmas Day. Some stores will be open as late as 10  p.m. on Christmas Eve.

Industry experts expect sales the weekend before Christmas to hit $10 billion, a billion more than was made on Black Friday this year.

USA Today compiled this list of store's holiday hours for major retailers:

How to focus at work during the holidays

Shopping and parties and presents, oh my!


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