As we move into the holiday season, it’s a good time to reflect on what keeps employees productive and satisfied. It’s not all about money. Intangible rewards are a big part of the reason people show up for work every day — recognition for a job well done, friendship and a sense of shared purpose. Done right, holiday celebrations aren’t just about fun; they’re about creating a sense of shared culture.

Done wrong, they can sap morale or even turn into a legal nightmare.

Here are a few Halloween pointers to keep in mind:

  • Some people’s religious attitudes will make them uncomfortable with religious holiday symbols or, conversely, anything smacking of paganism or the occult. Be sensitive to the decorations and party favors. Others may see Halloween as a religious holiday for which they deserve accommodation, like time off. In any case, don’t make party attendance mandatory.
  • Don’t let costumes get out of control; some folks may go too far. Make sure everyone understands the rules.
  • Keep an eye on the props that go with certain costumes; toy guns, for instance, are unacceptable.

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