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Planning a Workplace Holiday Party
As the Christmas season descends upon us, holiday party planning is in full swing. As an employer, it can sometimes be difficult to determine whether to throw a company party or simply furnish a bonus to add to the season of giving. While the latter may seem more attractive and much easier to pull off, a company holiday party has many benefits. True, the hassle of planning and executing a holiday party may seem daunting, but the benefits of doing so will extend beyond the celebration itself.
Benefits of Company Holiday Parties
There are two major benefits of holiday parties: improving relationships among employees and their supervisors, and building morale and culture.
Holiday Parties Improve Employee Relations. Acquainting both employees and supervisors with one another is a difficult task made even more difficult by typical workplace dynamics. Often, especially in large offices, getting to know co-workers in a non-superficial manner proves to be quite difficult. Since nearly one-third of everyone’s day is spent in the company of co-workers, getting to know the people behind the positions can truly boost productivity. Employees appreciate a vested interest in their success from their supervisors, so expressing this via a holiday celebration can generate greater success.
Holiday Parties Build Workplace Morale and Culture. There is no better time to express cheer and gratitude than during the holidays. A festive and heartfelt celebration at the end of a long year is a great way to say thank you and recognize employees for their achievements. It’s also a fantastic way to demonstrate appreciation for a year of hard work and to create a cohesive and inclusive environment within the workplace.
How to Plan the Festivities
Once you decide to throw a company party, the planning must be well-organized to ensure the most enjoyable experience. Here a few tips to ensure the celebration goes off without a hitch.
- Choose a Date. Select a few dates that may be appropriate, and send out an employee survey to determine which dates work best for the most people. Choose the date based on the majority vote to maximize employee attendance. When the date has been set, consider sending out a “Save the Date” email or notice.
- Determine a Budget. Set a maximum budget for the party and determine which elements are most important. These will require the largest proportion of the budget, so make certain to choose the most important features first. In case of accidental miscalculation or unexpected expenses, consider setting aside a small sum to cover any unintended costs that may arise.
- Determine the Theme and Location. Brainstorm what type of party you will throw and where it will occur. Will it take place after hours or in the office? What will the dress code look like? Determine if there will be a theme or if it will simply be a casual get-together. Consider adding a cohesive activity to the party to further boost communication and morale.
- Plan Food, Drinks, and Entertainment. Determine the type of meal to be served or whether it will simply be a series of appetizers. Beverages must also be considered when planning an adult party, and often require a large portion of the budget. Would you want to offer an open bar or drink tickets? Think about the type of dinnerware you will need. Another common element of holiday parties is the addition of some form of entertainment. Should a live band be considered? Maybe a DJ? How about a fun photo booth with holiday-themed props? This is sure to bring out the inner party animal in your associates.
Planning a workplace holiday party is no easy task, but with the proper preparations and attention to detail, it’s a wonderful way to say thank you for a job well done. Employees will appreciate the effort, and the return on investment is sure to be substantial.