How to Plan an Office Christmas Party
After a year of ups and downs, there is one thing we can all look forward to – the holidays. And with the holidays fast approaching, it’s time to start planning those end of year office parties. With many people working from home in recent times, it’s important to make sure everyone feels part of the team during this festive time – that’s why we recommend planning a get together to finish off the year on a high note.
One of the drawbacks discovered about remote working is that it can make employees feel distant from their colleagues and managers. An event like the company Christmas party is the perfect opportunity to remind everyone that they’re an important part of the team and rekindle that sense of belonging your team needs.
Budget & Team
While it might be obvious, starting with the budget is crucial to determining your party options within your capacity. The type of food and drinks you can supply, the theme, the venue and the entertainment all depend on what you can afford. So before your imagination runs wild – settle the budget and then get creative.
If you have some people helping you organise the event you’ll want to keep your organisation team small so you can easily contact each other throughout the process. This limits miscommunication and if an emergency pops up, it’s easy to get everyone back up to speed.
As this is your time to let your hair down and celebrate, it’s a good idea to try something different for your theme. Surprise your staff with a dose of originality (they’ll rave to their friends and family after). If you’re struggling with themes why not think outside the box with a Circus, Beach or Hollywood Glamour theme. Try to go with something that’s outside of what your staff usually do within the office. Once you’ve settled on a theme, pick the dress code that goes along with this. This should be clearly stated to all employees for that cohesive look.
If you’re struggling to think of entertainment to include, you might think about adding a photo booth or live music. A photo booth can be a great and creative option for a memoir of your event, whether it’s a retro-style booth or a modern one – you can have staff download and keep their favourite memories. Live music can also be a great option if it’s within your budget. Having music to add to the atmosphere of your party can help your staff feel relaxed and can be an amazing ice-breaker and get people out of their shells.
Food & Drinks
One of the most important aspects of your celebration will be the food and beverage choices – so choose wisely. As a general tip – never skimp on the food and drink (hangry staff is a bad sign). If you’re on a smaller budget, focus on food and drinks to make sure everyone’s happy. So whether you’re doing a catered event, having a group dinner or an in-office celebration, make sure the food is the top priority and there’s enough for everyone to enjoy themselves.
While secret Santas or other gift exchanges are a core aspect of Christmas parties, make sure to take the time to thank your teams for all the hard work they’ve put in this year. This is a great opportunity to celebrate employees who have gone above and beyond during these challenging times. Maybe try to include a mini ‘award ceremony’ for those team members you want to feel appreciated.
Having in-person events again is great! But make sure you’re following along with the current COVID-19 guidelines in your area to prevent any unnecessary spread. Have sanitising stations set up, with extra masks (if needed) and health code protocols for staff to follow. The last thing anyone wants is to be sick during their holidays so put in place some guidelines for people to follow and enjoy the night!
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