Wedding planning is stressful enough—from picking wedding attire to selecting wedding venues, and hiring wedding vendors to choosing both decorations and floral arrangements. One of the biggest causes of pre-wedding stress is the guest list. Whether or not you are working around a wedding budget and trying to keep the numbers low, the question of inviting co-workers is a tricky one. After all, you spend a lot of time with your co-workers on a daily basis, so does that mean that they deserve an invite?
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It’s your wedding and you can invite whom you want to, but you should definitely never feel obligated to invite anyone, especially if there are some questions swirling about if they should have made the cut. If you’re not sure how to handle a potentially awkward situation in the office because of your wedding guest list, Zola is here to help you navigate things. Read on for what to do.
One of the biggest decisions you’ll make about your wedding is whom to invite. Do you have to invite your manager and co-workers to your wedding? That’s a decision you have to make; but what if you want to invite your “work wife” or “work husband,” as well as your closest team members, but not everyone else? What if you just want to invite your boss? Or, what if you don’t invite any of them?
You can avoid drama and extend an invite to your co-workers. If you work on a smaller team, then it may be easier to invite everyone; however, if you work on a larger team, that’s when things could get tricky. In that case, you should only include as many as you would feel comfortable inviting in your preliminary guest list. You can then cut down the list later, and determine if your co-workers make the second list.
The easiest way to avoid any awkward situations and drama in the office is to not invite any of your co-workers to your wedding. If someone asks, you can tell them no one is invited from work—that will give you an easy out. But you and your partner can decide to make a pact not to invite anyone from work, especially if neither of you have people that you consider yourself close with on the job. If no one’s invited, no one will wonder why some people got invited and others didn’t, and they will assume that the guest list is just for family and close friends.
A lot of people have work spouses or even work besties that you lean on in the office. If you socialize outside of work, and that includes going out to restaurants, celebrating birthdays, or even personal, non-work-related chats or texts on the phone, then you’re likely pretty close. So that no one’s feelings get hurt, just don’t hand out the invites in front of everyone at work or make a big deal.
There’s no hard and fast rule that you have to invite your manager, but if you actually like them and have a friendly relationship, it can’t hurt. They would appreciate the gesture, and more than likely they probably wouldn’t come. If you don’t have a great relationship with your manager, then leave them off the guest list.
If the majority of your co-workers are invited to your wedding, but you are still unsure about one or two people, be courteous and invite them anyway, if you have the space. Leaving them out will make them feel like an odd man or woman out.
Sure you love to have a water cooler chat with your co-workers about the latest gossip, or vent about your workload with your work spouse. But, when it comes to your wedding, you have to make some tough decisions for your guest list. Here are a few questions to consider when deciding who makes the cut from the office.
Do you talk to your co-workers about non-work things or meet up regularly outside of the office to hang out? Do you invite each other to birthday parties, dinner parties, or even happy hour? If not, then you probably don’t have a close relationship with them outside of the office. If you are having an intimate wedding, and you don’t consider them a close friend, then they probably wouldn’t warrant an invite. Would they fit in your budget and headcount? These can be key factors in deciding if co-workers should be invited to your wedding.
It can be hard to determine if co-workers will be in your life long term. Of course you spend about eight hours or more a day with them, but do you think you’ll be friends five years from now? Your wedding is the most memorable life event and you want the people that will be in your life for the long haul to be there to celebrate with you.
If you are the manager, supervisor, or even run your own company, that brings a different course of action when it comes to inviting co-workers to your wedding. In this instance, you have to go all or none when it comes to the invite. You don’t want to appear to be playing favorites and have a human resources issue on your hands. Before extending any invitations, it’s best to check with your HR representative or company policies to determine the correct course of action for events outside of the office.
If you decide to extend an invitation to everyone in the office or even a handful, it can add up pretty quickly. Take your budget into consideration and then realize how many you invited and add up their potential plus ones. Can you afford that?
It can be difficult to contain your excitement and want to share the details about your big day with anyone that will listen. It’s also expected that your colleagues will be just as excited and want to ask tons of questions. If you have decided not to extend a wedding invitation to co-workers, then stop the conversation in its tracks by saying, “We decided to have an intimate wedding and we wish we could invite everyone, but we can’t.”
Avoid saying that only family and friends are invited, because a co-worker may consider themselves your friend and their feelings may get hurt that they didn’t receive an invite. If you are inviting some of your co-workers, let them know up front that you couldn’t invite everyone in the office and you would prefer not to discuss it in the office so that others won’t be offended that were left off the guest list. Most people are understanding about constraints when it comes to guest lists but there may be some that may feel hurt.
Your wedding is one of the biggest and most intimate events of your life. Inviting co-workers to participate along with all your family members and friends can be really awkward if you aren’t already friends outside of work. This is especially true if you display a different side of your personality at work than at home, or if you feel the need to maintain a certain decorum in the office. Co-workers may find it difficult to take your work demands or instructions seriously in the office if they’ve just seen you twerking in your wedding attire and drinking at your wedding. Decide as to whether or not you want your co-workers to see that side of you before you extend the invitation.
Your wedding is a special day that you will remember for years to come. When putting your guest list together, who are the faces you want to see in your wedding album when you’re celebrating your anniversary years from now? You want to make sure that you surround yourself with people that have a vested interest in you and your relationship.
Ultimately, when it comes to whether or not to invite co-workers to your wedding, or deciding which co-workers to invite, and even adding the boss to the list, it’s you and your partner’s decision. Invite your co-workers because you actually like them, have a relationship with them outside of the office, and because you can’t imagine walking down the aisle without them there. But, don’t invite them because you feel obligated or pressured. It’s your wedding and you make the rules.
If you need help creating your guest list and designating which co-workers will be invited to what events, let Zola help! Use our free and easy to use guest list manager to make things easier to collect RSVPs, meal choices, and mailing addresses.