SPRINGBOX / Insights

The Office DJ (Holiday Party Edition): 5 Tips on How to Rock Around the Clock

by Springbox, December 15, 2015

Update: We made it to BuzzFeed again!

Ah, the holiday season — twinkling lights, carefully chosen presents, and two days in Austin when rain happens to freeze for roughly 15 minutes and people lose their minds, refusing to leave the house in fear of the “slick roads.” The joy is palpable, and the cookies are plenty. And it’s time for the office holiday party!

Depending on where you work, office holiday parties can take many forms: maybe it’s simply a modest Secret Santa gift exchange with a bowl of fruit punch, or maybe a nice holiday dinner where you and your coworkers sit down to break bread at a moderately priced restaurant that seats 50. Or maybe your office throws a party so legendary that it truly lives up to that “We work hard and play hard” tagline that’s emblazoned on your company’s website.

No matter what your style is, somebody is going to get stuck with the worst job at the party. And with that, I present to you The Worst Job You’ll Ever Have: 5 Tips on How to Be the Office DJ (Holiday Party Edition). Yes, even at the holiday party the Office DJ manages to bring out the Scrooge in everyone if he or she is not careful. That said, once in a partridge in a pear tree, an Office DJ can play that sweet chorus of melodies that really gets the party going. It isn’t easy, but if you respect the 5 tips below, you might just have your office rockin’ around the clock.

1.  Start with Sinatra

Like every good mix you want to start strong, but you don’t want to show your (Christmas) cards too early. That’s why you’ve got to play the smooth classics early. While people are filling up their cups and grabbing a brownie, let Sinatra, Bublè and the other crooners serenade your coworkers with their Christmas classics. Keeping it cool early in the night will pay off later.

2.  Girls (and I) can’t resist pop music

So you just finished playing ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’ (Rookie mistake by the way; that song can be a huge downer.), and your coworkers are fading fast. The cookies are gone, and people are making the pivotal choice of the night: Should I stay or should I go? You literally hold the holiday spirit in your hands on this next song. What do you do?

Two words. Mariah Carey.

The moment the girls (and me) in the room hear “I don’t want a lot for Christmas…” you are going to hear a choir so sweet and out of tune that an angel will get its wings.

Follow this up with ‘NSync’s “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays,” and it’s game over. (Also a personal fave.)

3.  Pair the music with the food

It doesn’t make sense to play a deep track off of Justin Bieber’s Christmas album during a nice steak dinner, just like it doesn’t make sense to play James Taylor’s “Auld Lang Syne” when your coworker just spiked the egg nog. Know the room, man! Christmas music is like a fine wine: It works best when it’s paired with the food. It also works best when it's paired with fine wine.

4.  Tran-Siberian Orchestra is NOT as cool as you think

I know what you’re thinking: C’mon, nothing rocks harder than people shredding versions of Christmas songs on electric guitars. But believe me, unless you brought a smoke machine and a professional laser light show, you’re missing the mark on this one. You’d be better off playing “Can’t Feel My Face” off of Kidz Bop 99 than trying to make the Orchestra happen.

5.  Know when it’s time to put it on shuffle

As always, being the Office DJ is not something you should take lightly, especially when you’ve made the big time, playing the holiday party. However, you have to know when it’s time to turn on shuffle and go party! Whether your year has been one of generosity or one that didn’t quite pan out, the office holiday party is a time for letting it all go and being glad you work with such cool people.

So grab a drink, high five a coworker and make a toast to the new Q1!

Written by Chase Williams, Senior Project Manager and resident office DJ

Want more winter-y cheer? Check out The 12 Dogs of Springbox and see our pooches do tricks to make it on the nice list.