As the boss or person put in charge of planning the office holiday party, you might be feeling very stressed about making sure the party is memorable and leaves employees wanting to come back again next year. You might be sitting there remembering holiday parties of years past and thinking to yourself, “I wouldn’t have even wanted to go to that party, so why did I make my employees go?” That’s why you have to make some simple adjustments, think about what’s presently going on and clear your mind of any ideas of what an office holiday party should look like.
Allison Powers, event coordinator at Eschelon Experiences in Raleigh, North Carolina provided some great tips on how to make sure your office holiday party is memorable for all the right reasons:
Theme, theme, theme - Once you’ve selected a theme, be it Santa’s Workshop, Naughty Elves or The Twelve Days of Christmas, stick with it and make sure it’s incorporated throughout the evening. Allow your employees to be freed from having to find the best evening gown on the Neiman Marcus sale rack and let them dress up to go along with the theme. A theme can also lead to fun activities during the party including games and contests and what the DJ is playing for music.
Incorporate social media - Once you’ve settled on a theme, make sure your invitations or emails leading up to the company party are using hash tags to describe the party. You can also incorporate an Instagram or Facebook account set up exclusively for the party so that your employees can hash tag photos or upload them to share them with other co-workers. Open it up to make your employees feel like they are part of the experience. This will also help eliminate fears of them being watched for “unprofessional” or “unbecoming” behavior. Let them know the party is about fun and fellowship, not just being on the clock for a party they are forced to be at.
Plan ahead - Determine exactly what your party budget is going to be and how much you are going to spend per employee. Sure, some won’t drink and some won’t eat, but other employees will surely eat the leftovers or pick up an extra drink or two. Make sure your employees know what the plans are for food and drink so they can plan ahead in case they are expecting to drink and eat until their hearts are content. It’s not inappropriate as long as communication is clear between you, the party planner and your employees. As long as everyone knows what expectations are, you won’t have any issues once the party is nearing its closing hours.
Transportation - If your party is a long way away from the usual office, or you know your employees will want to carpool, have an option for them. Charter a party bus, limo or sprinter to have your employees picked up at a centralized location, like the office, and taken to the party. They can then be taken back to the office after the party to go home. US Coachways can help make sure your employees arrive safely and festively at your company party. Check out our White Elephant Special for up to a 10% discount on your office holiday party booking. Or give us a call at 1-800-272-0633 to request a quote. Make sure to mention promo code ELEPHANT.
While there are many ways to make an office holiday party truly memorable, if you follow some of Allison’s tips, you’re sure to be on the right path to success. You might even have people asking for more office get togethers during the year.