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Monique Paul

Monique Paul


Copyright © 2012 by Monique Paul

A Corporate Christmas Tale… Fiction or… Reality?

Is a Corporate Christmas party an easy event to organize? Many people think that being in charge of a party is something that anyone can do… Fact… or Fiction?

No doubt that the easiest and more pleasant activity to work out is organizing the Christmas party in the company. All the joy! The good will spirit! What a lot of satisfaction! These are Charlotte’s thoughts, the new Human Resources manager in charge of that year’s celebration.

Charlotte walked out of her boss’ office, Johan trusted her, and she was ready to be congratulated for an excellent work done.

She just got this new position and relocated to this city; this was her first task. She was willing to be accepted by her colleagues in this new job and company, her goal was to make this party a memorable one.

Charlotte started immediately, she visited several restaurants; quoted providers for the music, the decoration, the Christmas tree, everything was included in her list. During the next three days, she worked hard on the budget; it was clear and complete. It was showing three locations’ options. So with all this inside her Christmas green folder, she headed to Johan’s office to get the approval.

“This is a great work, Charlotte!” Johan said. “I think ‘Harry’s Grill’ is the best option, let’s have it there.”

“Yes, Johan!” Charlotte said standing up and walking to the door. She stopped right at the door. “Everything will be ready this week.”

“This is so easy,” she thought while walking to her office.

She dedicated the rest of the week to check on every detail of the party. She still had almost four weeks to communicate to all the employees about the company’s Christmas gathering and the related activities.

“They are only 450 employees, not a big deal. Johan told me to send an official email, and that is what I am going to do.” She thought.

She typed the invitation email and sent it first to Johan to have his opinion; he replied with a happy face and the phrase ‘Send it!’ so, she did.


From: Charlotte Bouvier, HR
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party
Date: December 1st.

I am glad to inform you that the Company’s Christmas party will be held this December 22nd. It will start at 13:00 hrs., at the restaurant ‘Harry’s Grill’ restaurant. Our CEO is bringing the wine! We will have an open bar from 14:00 to 20:00 hrs. The restaurant will be closed to the public, opened just for us to enjoy our party.

There will be a band playing traditional carols and music to dance; we will also have a Karaoke session. I am making a list of those who want to sing. Don’t be surprised if our CEO shows up with Santa Claus costume! He has an important message to give us this day that we will be all together.

The Christmas tree will be lit up at 14:00 hrs. The gift exchange will take place after the toast at 17:00 hrs. The cost per gift can’t be less than $15 without exceeding $25. The party is for employees only!

Have a wonderful day and a Merry Christmas.



From: Charlotte Bouvier, HR
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party – Second message
Date: December 2nd.

I was definitely not excluding our Jewish employees – I know they don’t celebrate the Christian Christmas. We recognize the importance of the Hanuka that usually is at the same time as our celebration. However this year it does not coincide. Maybe it is better if we talk about the ‘New Year’s Party’.

I extend the same message to our employees celebrating the Kwanzaa.

We will have a Christmas tree, but we won’t sing traditional carols performance of the employees. This is a party opened to every religion and belief.

Happy now?

Merry Christmas to you and your families.

Have a wonderful day!



From: Charlotte Bouvier, HR
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party – Third message
Date: December 3rd.

Regarding the message from the guys in ‘AA’ asking for an alcohol-free table… you forgot to sign it!

I’d be glad to set a table for you, but if I put a sign reading ‘AA only’ it won’t be discrete…

Can anyone help me solve this?

Forget about the gift exchange, not allowed anymore. The workers union members think it is too expensive, while the executives said that nothing decent can be bought with that amount.




From: Charlotte Bouvier, HR
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party – Fourth message
Date: December 7th.

What an international group we are, indeed!

I didn’t know that the Muslim month Ramadan starts on December the 20th. According to their beliefs, eating or drinking during the day hours is not allowed.

We are sensitive to the fact that the time we plan to serve the food at our party may hurt our Muslim employees, so we’re trying to delay the food service as much as we can, anyway in this time of the year, the day is pretty short.

Additionally, ‘Harry’s Grill’ will have individual swan shaped aluminum packages for our Muslim employees willing to take their food home. Do you think this will work?

I also want to inform you that the ‘Overweight Anonymous’ will have a special table away from the desserts carts and the pregnant women will have a table near to the ladies room. All the gay men will also have a table to sit together, and the lesbians will be on the other side of the restaurant. The gays’ tables will have pink roses’ centerpieces.

Regarding the male employee who asked to come dressed as a woman, I am sorry, but it is not allowed. Also, we can’t have taller chairs for the tall employees nor cushions for the short ones.

The restaurant agreed to have a low-fat menu for anyone on a diet, but we can’t control the amount of salt used to cook the different dishes, so we suggest, those with hypertension should please try the food before eating it. There will also be special low cholesterol dishes using fish and turkey.

There will be fresh fruit for the diabetics, the restaurant does not have sugar free desserts, I’m sorry! Did I forget anything?



From: Charlotte Bouvier, HR
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party – Fifth message
Date: December 9th.

So… December 22 it is the Winter Solstice… Hmmm… And what do you want me to do?

To our employees who practice the cult honoring Mother Earth, I must inform you that anti-fire policies at ‘Harry’s Grill’ don’t allow the aromatic herbs burning ritual, but you can invite your shaman to play the drums while the band is on break. Happy now?


From: Charlotte Bouvier, HR
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party – Sixth message
Date: December 12th.

Ok, I was not referring to anything sinister when I informed you that our CEO might show up wearing a Santa Claus costume. Even though the Santa anagram may be Satan, this is only a coincidence; there is not any evil occult reference regarding the fat man dressed in red, for God sake!

Santa Claus is a tradition like the Christmas tree or the red hearts on Valentine’s Day! Please open your minds…

Can we have a little Christmas spirit? Please!

I take this opportunity to inform you all that the company’s managers have decided not to make any announcement during the Christmas party. They will send an internal newsletter.



From: Charlotte Bouvier, HR
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party – Seventh message
Date: December 15th.

I have NO idea what the content of the manager’s newsletter is. Actually, I DO NOT CARE!!! I KNOW WHAT I AM GETTING!!!

If you try to change anything else in the event, you are dead people!?!?!? I won’t allow one more single change or addition. I don’t care if you have hemorrhoids, and you need inflatable wheels to sit! You WILL NOT have them!!!

Regarding the vegetarians… it is enough! The party will take place at ‘Harry’s Grill’ whether you like it or not!

Sooo… You better go and sit down and be quiet at the ‘Death Grill’ as you call it! I don’t care if you eat or decide to starve. Actually, if you do, you will make me very happy!

There won’t be any salad bar with dehydrated tomatoes! Did you know that tomatoes cry when they are dehydrated? They cry the same as the pigs when they are killed!!! Their juice is like the pig’s blood spreading all over the floor! Did you know that? I have heard them, and seen them also!!!

I hope you have an unpleasant Christmas!

If you drink, drive! May you have an accident or be arrested!



From: Johan Heinrich, HR Director
To: All the employees
Subject: Company’s Christmas Party – Eighth message
Date: December 17th.

I think I am speaking on behalf of all our employees when I wish our dear Charlotte a speedy recovery. She fell sick with a strange mental illness due to stress. There is not yet a cure for this, so the doctors are doing their best trying to help her to overcome her mental imbalance. Actually, they are using some new techniques and medications never used before in humans hoping to have positive results.

You can send your Christmas and good will cards to the Crawford Mental Hospital, where she’s been treated, on 28 Bay Avenue. However, her doctor told me that she reacts to the company’s and employees’ communications, by shaking and rolling her eyes when she hears about us.

Regarding the Christmas party, it is canceled; we will have the afternoon of December 22nd off.

Merry Christmas!

Good luck to the one in charge of the New Year’s Company’s party!

Ok, let’s get to work!!!



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