Making the Call: Deciding Whether to Include Alcohol at Your Next Corporate Event

Corporate events, including business dinners, networking events, and holiday parties, often feature alcohol. But serving alcohol at these events comes with risks, such as increased liability, possible bad behavior, and damage to the event’s reputation. Therefore, companies have become more thoughtful about serving alcohol at corporate events. Implementing good practices to minimize these risks is something that more companies now do.

The decision to serve alcohol should depend on the nature and purpose of the event, the type of attendees, and the company culture. For instance, a formal business dinner with clients or a conference with experts in the field might not need alcohol, but a casual team-building event might. Also, the company should think about the preferences and expectations of the people who will be there, such as whether or not they want alcohol to be served.

If the company decides to serve alcohol, it should put in place good rules to make sure people drink responsibly and keep risks to a minimum. Some of the good practices include:

Set clear guidelines

The company should set clear rules about drinking alcohol and let everyone know about them before the event. The rules should say what kinds of alcoholic drinks will be served, how much and for how long, and what kind of behavior is expected from people who drink. The guidelines should also prohibit underage drinking and drinking and driving.

Limit the quantity and duration of alcohol service

To keep people from drinking too much, the company should limit the amount and length of time that alcohol is served. For example, the company could limit the number of drinks per person or stop serving alcohol after a certain time.

Provide food and non-alcoholic beverages.

The company should provide food and non-alcoholic beverages to accompany the alcohol service. Food and non-alcoholic beverages should be readily available and plentiful to encourage responsible drinking.

Hire professional bartenders

The company should hire trained bartenders who know how to spot signs of intoxication and stop people from getting too much to drink. The bartenders should also be able to give people tips on how to drink responsibly and offer drinks that don’t contain alcohol.

Encourage responsible behavior

The company should encourage people to act responsibly and choose a person or team to keep an eye on the situation and step in if needed. The person or team in charge should be trained to spot signs of intoxication, stop people from drinking too much, and handle any problems that may come up.

Provide transportation

The company should offer ways for people to get home if they’ve had too much to drink and can’t drive safely. The transportation options could include shuttle buses, ride-sharing services, or taxis.

Monitor social media

The company should keep an eye on social media during and after the event to make sure that people aren’t posting anything bad or inappropriate about the event or drinking alcohol. The company should also have a plan in place to address any inappropriate or damaging content.

By following these best practices, companies can serve alcohol at business events in a safe and responsible way. However, even with these measures in place, incidents can still occur. So, the company should have a plan for how to handle any problems that may come up, including problems caused by drinking. The plan should include ways to handle problems, like getting rid of people who are acting irresponsibly, dealing with complaints, and telling the right people what happened.

In conclusion, serving alcohol at corporate events is sometimes appropriate and even necessary, but it should be done in a responsible way that takes into account the risks. By following good practices, companies can reduce the risks that come with serving alcohol and make sure that everyone at the event is safe and has a good time.


If you’re looking for a way to implement a system for drinking tickets at your next corporate event, talk to one of our event experts. We can help you find the right solution to ensure responsible drinking and minimize risks. Contact us today to learn more.