It's officially holiday season which means many companies throw their yearly office party. We've all heard the horror stories of co-workers shamelessly hooking up, embarrassing drunken slobbery, and folks making utter fools of themselves in other capacities in front of their bosses and peers. We may have even seen the debauchery unfold right before our eyes or made the regrettable decisions to party too hard in the past. And no, your co-workers haven't forgotten how you overdid it on the eggnog, xeroxed your face, and faxed it to upper management.
This year, enjoy the company holiday party and even be the life of it, without embarrassing yourself by showing off your "Electric Slide" moves to the new intern from accounting. By maintaining a level of decorum and tastefully spending enjoyable time with your co-workers, you can have a blast at the holiday party and even wake up hangover-free. It's time to party!
1. Have a Drink or Two (NO more)
If you enjoy a glass of merlot, a crisp seasonal beer, or a fruity cocktail now and then, there's no reason to forgo an adult drink at the office party. They're being offered, so it isn't like you brought your own flask of Jack Daniels to sneak in the restroom.
That said, know your limit and remain coherent at all times. Drink soda or water between drinks and promise yourself you'll only down a drink or two. As per Monster, "Over-imbibing is deadly to your office reputation, because your secret -- and not necessarily complimentary -- thoughts about your coworkers, boss and job are more likely to come flying out of your mouth when you've had too much to drink, says image consultant Dianne Daniels."
Along with the "liquid truth" element of too much alcohol, you can become clumsy, uninhibited (leading to who-knows-what), and ill. Puking in your party dress is not a resume-builder.
2. Prepare a Non-Offensive Joke
Everyone likes to share a good laugh, especially in a party atmosphere, so break the ice by busting out a clever joke to show you're outgoing and fun. However, know your audience and keep it clean. Offending HR even in a party setting is still a major faux pas.
If you're not a born comedian, seek out some jokes and one-liners online. Laugh Factory is chock full of chuckle-inducing content with all sorts of jokes in a variety of categories. Wouldn't you rather be the one people are laughing with and not at this year?
3. Mix & Mingle
Some of us never get to know everyone we work with when we're confined to a particular department or area of the building. The company party is the perfect time to introduce yourself to the folks in marketing, legal, and sales. Find out more about them both personally and professionally. Sticking with the same crowd you see day in and day out may feel comfortable, but it's a tad boring, not to mention, fairly rude. Parties were meant to be fun and part of the fun is sharing in the celebration with everyone present.
Monster suggests, "Say hello, and try to imagine doing a figure-eight around the room, greeting as many people as you can, says Michael Ray Smith, PhD, a communication professor at Campbell University."
Once you get to know more of the people who keep the company running, you'll have more appreciation for them and your company as a whole. Plus, in the future, they'll remember that you made the first move to become more sociable.
Are you ready to party? When all else fails, watch how your boss behaves. Let's hope he or she knows how to keep it together. Then, indulge in the food, take in the music, and let the good times roll!
For more party etiquette tips, read some worthy recommendations from Business Insider.
When you take out a loan for a car, charge something to your credit card, or get a personal line of credit, there is going to be an interest rate that applies to your loan.
A lot of different factors go into what you will be charged, including your own personal credit score. But even those with flawless credit still see a minimum charge that they can't get around. That all goes back to the Federal Funds Rate.
One thing consumers rarely realize is that all of our banks are lending money to each other every night. Banks are legally required to maintain a certain percentage of their deposits in non-interest-bearing accounts at the Federal Reserve to ensure they have enough money to cover any withdrawals that may unexpectedly come up. However, deposits can fluctuate and it's very common for some banks to exceed the requirement on certain days while some fall short. In cases like this, banks actually lend each other money to ensure they meet the minimum balance. It's a bit hard to imagine these multibillion-dollar financial institutions needing to borrow money to tide them over for a bit, but it happens every single night at the Federal Reserve. It's also a nice deal for those with balances above the reserve balance requirement to earn a bit of money with cash that would normally just be sitting there.
The Federal Reserve
The exact interest rate the banks will charge each other is a matter of negotiation between them, but the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) (the arm of the Federal Reserve that sets monetary policy) meets eight times a year to set a target rate. They evaluate a multitude of economic indicators including unemployment, inflation, and consumer confidence to decide the best rate to keep the country in business. The weighted average of all interest rates across these interbank loans is the effective federal funds rate.
This rate has a huge impact on the economy overall as well as your personal finances. The federal funds rate is essentially the cheapest money available to a bank and that feeds into all of the other loans they make. Banks will add a slight upcharge to the rate set by the Fed to determine what is the lowest interest that they will announce for their most creditworthy customers, also known as the prime rate. If you have a variable interest rate loan (very common with credit cards and some student loans), it's likely that the interest rate you pay is a set percentage on top of that prime rate that your lender is paying. That's why in times of low interest rates (it was set at 0% during the Great Recession), a lot of borrowers should go for fixed interest rate loans that won't increase. However, if the federal funds rate was relatively high (it went up to 20% in the early 1980's), a variable interest rate loan may be a better decision as you would be charged less interest should the rate drop without the need to refinance.
The federal funds rate also has a major impact on your investment portfolio. The stock market reacts very strongly to any changes in interest rates from the Federal Reserve, as a lower rate makes it cheaper for companies to borrow and reinvest while a higher rate may restrict capital and slow short-term growth. If you have a significant portion of your investments in equities, a small change in the federal funds rate can have a large impact on your net worth.
Whether you're leaving a job involuntarily, departing for something new, or just want to prepare for the unknown, it is smart to understand all your options regarding your 401k.
Frugal gifting often gets a bad reputation. However, this shopping method does not make you cheap — it makes you practical. Frugal gifts often avoid waste and overspending and can be just as meaningful (if not more so) as any other present.
With the National Retail Federation predicting each consumer this holiday season to spend upwards of $1,000 on holiday gifts amidst an economic recession —this year might be the perfect time to reconsider your spending budget. We've formulated the ultimate list of frugal gift-giving ideas to get you started.