‘Tis the Season: Plan for In-Office Holiday Parties
Over the last two years, most businesses didn’t hold in-office holiday parties. They either celebrated virtually or decided to forgo the celebration altogether. This year the in-office holiday party is making somewhat of a comeback.
Holiday get-togethers boost morale, build camaraderie, and enhance and nurture relationships between management and employees. You get to know more about a person in a relaxed environment than you otherwise would. Employees feel appreciated and recognized when a special event is designed for them.
If you are holding an in-office holiday party at your agency and haven’t yet started planning the event, now is the time. Here are some tips to get your party on:
- Choose a date when most of the staff will be available. December is a big travel month, with many taking vacation days to be with family over the holidays. In addition, following two years of either no travel or limited travel, everyone is eager to take to the skies for a destination holiday. Opt for a date that works for your staff.
- Decide on the size of the party. Will it be employees only, or will significant others also be invited? This will depend on the size of the office space and your budget. Although we are out of the height of the pandemic, COVID is still a consideration, which may influence party size.
- Determine your budget. Consider the cost of every party aspect, from food to drinks, entertainment, activities, gifts, and venue (if it’s not in the office).
- Decide on the type of party you want to hold. Office parties range from half-day parties to after-hours events, activity-centric options, and others. If you want to ensure that most employees make the party, have it during office hours.
- Involve some of your staff to come up with party ideas. Get input on the type of food, entertainment, and fun activities in which everyone can participate. You may have a holiday game show or holiday trivia game where teams compete (producers vs. CSRs vs. admin vs. leadership, for example) – or even hold a talent show with various cool prizes! You can ask workers to share their holiday stories and traditions and create a company-wide slide deck. This is a great way to celebrate diversity and inclusion.
- Send out email invites. Once you nail down the date and type of party so your staff can calendar it, get those invites out ASAP.
- Review company rules and guidelines for throwing office parties.
It’s important to consider remote employees, too, so they don’t feel left out of the company’s festivities. Find a way to have remote workers involved if they are located too far to make it to the office or other venue. You can set up a Zoom holiday party, encourage remote workers to dress up, and send a physical or virtual gift.