Please join President Williams and our Chapter Chaplain, Kimberly Davis for a time of "Intentional Prayer" as we pray for our NOBLE family, our brothers and sisters in law enforcement and our community. NOBLE's National Chaplain, Rev. Cassandra Bledsoe will also join the call when able. The Chicago Chapter Prayer Line will take place each Tuesday morning at 7AM CST beginning on Feb 19th.
Prayer time is not expected to last more than 30 minutes during which you can offer a prayer, request prayers for others or pray silently for HIS continued grace, mercy and blessings. All are encouraged to dial in to bless and be blessed.
The call-in number is: 1-641-715-3580; Access code: 452476#
Balancing Fun and Professionalism at The Holiday Office Party
November 28, 2018
Carol Kinsey Goman, Ph.D
Are you planning to attend your office holiday party? I hope so. This is a great occasion to relax and have a good time — and can be a highly anticipated, positive antidote to year-end stress. But anytime you combine fun with professionalism, it can also be a challenge. Here are eight tips to ensure that you make a great impression while you mix and mingle at the office party.
1) Prepare your “party intro”
The way you greet your fellow party-goers can have a huge impact on their perception of you. The best party introductions combine business information with a personal twist. An example would be: “Hi, I’m Stacy/Steven from Marketing. I’ve been with XYZ for just a few months, and this is the first social event I’ve attended. It’s so nice to meet co-workers face-to-face.”
2) Look approachable
Some nonverbal behaviors can bring out the best in people. Smiling is one of them, as it directly influences how other people respond. When you smile at someone, they almost always smile in return. And, because facial expressions trigger corresponding feelings, the smile you get back actually changes that person’s emotional state in a positive way.
You probably knew that. But did you also know that slow onset smiles lead to even more positive reactions? So, rather that approaching people with a grin, begin with a slight smile and let it grow organically. And don’t close off. If you want people to see you as comfortable and approachable, don’t cross your arms and legs or use objects (your drink or plate of food) as a barrier. Doing so makes you look guarded or insecure. Instead, hold your glass or plate to the side of your body so that the core of your body is exposed.
Above all, resist the urge to check your email or texts. Instead give other party-goers your full attention. (This is a great time to improve your eye contact)
3) Take a stand
To project a poised and professional look, it is important to stand tall. Slumping by rounding your shoulders and collapsing into your chest makes you look vulnerable and submissive. When you stand tall, with your shoulders pulled back, your feet about hip-distance apart, and your head held high, you assume a posture of confidence and self-esteem.
4) Limit your alcohol
There are many reasons why you should watch your drinking at an office party. (And, I’m sure, many career-limiting examples of colleagues who didn’t!) But one reason that might not be as obvious as others is that alcohol impairs your ability to read body language. Brain imaging research found that alcohol reduces the ‘coupling’ between the amygdala and the orbitofrontal cortex – a part of the prefrontal cortex – and inhibits the ability to assess and properly respond to nonverbal cues. So, if you want to accurately gauge how people are reacting to you, and how to respond effectively, it’s advisable to stay sober.
5) Dress for success
Clothes make a visual statement about how you see yourself. Van Edwards and her research team recently conducted a study about the impact of colors on other people’s perception. They found that if you wear blue, you appear to be calm, wise, and stable. Wearing orange or yellow makes you look positive and upbeat. And red denotes passion, attention.
Your appearance is part of your personal brand. Think about the impression you want to make and dress to accentuate it. You might even choose to add a “conversation opener” – a colorful scarf or unique piece of jewelry. In general, stylish and fun is fine.
6) Get up close – but not too personal
Holiday office parties offer lots of opportunities for handshakes and even hugs among colleagues but be aware that not everyone likes to be embraced or thinks it is an appropriate greeting in a business setting. Van Edwards advises those who are reluctant to hug to subtly angle their left shoulder away and quickly offer their right hand for a shake. Watch for this signal and respect people’s right to choose.
The anthropologist, Edward Hall, coined the word “proxemics” to describe phenomena like territoriality among business colleagues. And it was he who first noted the physical zones in which people feel most comfortable dealing with one another.
At an office party, there’s nothing wrong with leaning slightly toward the person you’re talking to; in fact, this body language cue indicates that you’re engaged and interested. But be respectful of other people’s space. If you’re at a business function in the U.S., (even if that function is a party) never get closer than 18 inches. If you get any closer, you risk entering the “intimate zone” that Americans reserve for family and loved ones. Few people will feel comfortable if you invade this personal space uninvited. (Another reason why some people may not like hugs.)
7) Buddy up
Gayle Hallgren-Rezac and Judy Thomson, co-authors, WORK THE POND! Use the Power of Positive Networking to Leap Forward in Work and Life, advise you to work the room in pairs. The role of each “tag teammate” is to keep an eye on the other person, to make introductions, and to make sure that both of you are comfortably engaged in conversations.
8) Show your gratitude
Another tip from these master networkers is to seek out the person who is hosting the party. (This is probably an executive or senior leader.) Thank him or her for sponsoring the event. You don’t have to go overboard with praise but acknowledge that you appreciate the chance to connect with some new people you wouldn’t have met otherwise. If this senior person is open to continuing the conversation, mention something positive that your team is doing. (Think of one or two examples ahead of time.) Of course, this is also a perfect time to thank all your co-workers who have been helpful or supportive in the past year.
If lucky enough to be invited, you definitely should attend your office holiday party. Don’t pass up the opportunity to have fun while expanding your network, building your personal brand — and making a great impression!
Sheriff’s Sgt. Ron Helus, who lost his life in the mass shooting at a Thousand Oaks, Calif., bar late Wednesday, is being hailed a hero in the aftermath of the attack. Helus had served as an officer in Ventura County for 29 years and was planning to retire in “the next year or so” when he was killed at the Borderline Bar & Grill during his effort to save others, Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean told reporters during an emotional press conference.
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We pause to lift up our brothers and sisters in Pittsburgh. We send our love and support to all first responders. With heavy hearts we send condolences to the families affected by this horrific tragedy.
What happened this morning at the Tree of Life Synagogue is unthinkable. We stand against hate and life up the spirit of Love.
In His Service,
Rev. Cassandra Bledsoe
NOBLE National Chaplain