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Socializing After Work

by Susan Green  |  3108 views  |  3 comments  |        Rate this now! 


I'm a single mom and my colleagues sometime ask me to join them for dinner on a weekend with their wives. I have a son that I don't get to spend much time with during the week and I cherish our time on the weekends. I also don't have a significant other to join me. I feel like by not going to these dinners, I am missing out on bonding experience and possible promotions in the future. Am I hurting my career by not attending these dinners?

In the workplace it is customary for some colleagues to spend time together during non working hours but in my experience that takes place with the younger, single or married with no children crowds. I too have felt left out but have never felt that my career was in jeopardy if I did not attend. Most managers who are responsible for their departments will schedule after work get-togethers with enough advance notice for you to be able to attend and you will know when it is important to be there, for you to be visible and for you to be bonding with your colleagues. This is the difference between bonding (as in friendships) and doing the right thing professionally for your career.

If you don’t feel comfortable going alone and have a child at home then don’t go - if you want to bond with others at the office then I would suggest you picking a date that is good for you (since you have the limitations on your schedule) and approaching the colleagues you want to spend time with to see if they are available during your free time.

Susan Green is a Senior Managing Director with a bulge bracket investment bank. Ms. Green has had a successful career in the financial services industry for more than 25 years. She lives in the New York tri-state area and has two wonderful children.


About the Author

Susan Green is a Senior Managing Director with a bulge bracket investment bank and a mom of two kids.

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3 comments so far...

  • Many of my colleagues enjoy a periodic group Happy Hour. It doesn't work for me because I have a handicapped child, and I have to be home to meet his bus or make other arrangements ahead of time. I like my coworkers; I would enjoy the casual meet-up.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Daisy on 2nd May 2008

  • Diane - this is a great idea! We actually live close to my parents - but they work. But my mom does have one week off a semester and I think I am going to try and use your idea! Thanks!

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Nataly on 13th May 2007

  • Hi - I'm a single mom too, and CEO of a networking organization and have struggled with this since the day my son was born. My solution. I fly in my mom for one week and then go to EVERYTHING I can in that one week. Then I don't go to anything for 2 months until mom comes again. But it gives people the impression that I'm available. I stay on all the invitation lists and my son is just as happy to play with grandma. Hope that helps.


    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Diane K. Danielson on 12th May 2007