Toast! It’s Happy Hour at the Workplace

July 9, 2008

Happy Hour WorkplaceIt’s five o’clock and the front-desk secretary is mixing margaritas in the workplace cafeteria, also known as the “happy-hour café.” Your buddy, Tim, is already there, getting to know the new girl better. You put off going the last time, stating the Misses wanted you to come home straight away, so the family could get started on planning Samantha’s seventh birthday party. The truth is, the time before that, you spilled your John Collins onto your supervisor. Should you go this time?

In a survey performed by, 82 percent of workers stated they attend happy hour to bond with co-workers; 15 percent said they attend happy hour to get the scoop on the latest office gossip; and 13 percent go because they feel like they have too.

Both males and females are attending happy hour at work, with workers ages 25 to 34 attending the most. “Happy hours are a great way to meet people in different departments and at different levels, both more junior and senior,” said Caroline Ceniza-Levine, a success coach at SixFigureStart. “This enables workers to have a better understanding of their company, to learn what opportunities exist outside their area, and to even be a springboard for friendships. That said, workers should use common sense about limiting their alcohol intake. If happy hours are uncomfortable, they can get a similar personal/professional mixed networking effect with company sports teams or company affinity groups.”


Industries that ranked the highest for happy hour were:

  • Professional and business services (35 percent)
  • Financial services (34 percent)
  • IT (29 percent)
  • Sales (28 percent)
  • Healthcare (24 percent)


Employees weren’t shy about incidences that occurred during happy hour:

  • Bad-mouthed a co-worker or member of management (16 percent)
  • Shared a secret about a co-worker (10 percent)
  • Kissed a co-worker (8 percent)
  • Drank too much and acted unprofessionally (8 percent)
  • Shared a secret about the company (5 percent)
  • Sang karaoke (4 percent)


Thirty-nine percent of workers do not attend happy hour because they like to keep their work and private lives separate.


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