Holiday Party Planning
I know it's hard to believe but it's that time of the year again! The holidays are just around the corner and what better time to celebrate employee dedication and/or customer appreciation? Holiday parties are a great way to bring people together, to motivate staff and to network. Whether you're thinking of throwing an elaborate bash or hosting a small dinner party, you can find ways to show your gratitude, raise spirits, and celebrate the holidays together.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when planning your next party:
- Certainly work within your budget but be as generous as possible. Remember that employees have worked hard all year and deserve to be recognized... and maybe even a little spoiled... for it.
- Hire a professional to create fun, personalized invitations to get your guests excited about the event - refrain from sending a generic e-mail or your typical e-vite. Keep it personal by hand delivering the invitations along with little gift bags filled with tissue paper and candy.
- Don't skimp on the food! What do people remember most about an event? The food, bar service and entertainment. Don't let your guests leave hungry. A hungry tummy leads to a frustrated employee.
- Consider choosing a unique location to have your event: an aquarium, a boat or cruise ship, an art gallery... the possibilities are endless. Can't afford to take the party on the road? Dress up the office and turn it into a winter wonderland with lots of white fabrics, lights and maybe even an ice sculpture.
- Stay in line with the spirit of giving and ensure that your guests don't leave empty handed. If you're planning on giving holiday bonuses, dress them up by putting a check in mini Christmas stockings with your company logo and employees name imprinted on them. The stockings are inexpensive and it's a nice touch that shows you care. Can't afford bonuses? Put some candy or cookies in the stockings along with a handwritten thank you card for all their hard work. Remember, little things can go a long way.
- Consider throwing a charity-driven event. Combine a holiday party with a mini-fundraiser. Offer to make a donation to a charity of choice and make it in honor of your staff. Highlight the spirit of giving and make a difference while having fun!
- Make memories! Hire a professional photographer or find a volunteer to take pictures throughout the evening and then have them create a collage that can be placed in your office to remind them of the fun they had.
And... last but certainly not least... hire a professional event planner (eh hem... that's me!). If it's an employee holiday party, the celebration should be fun for all staff members so don't saddle one or two people with the task of planning a party. Not only is it a waste of company time to have employees focus on event planning rather than their actual job, but it ends up feeling more like work than fun for the employee(s).
So now you've got some helpful hints and a strong reminder that if you're going to spread some holiday cheer - it's time to get going! Show your employees and clients how much you appreciate them and in turn, set a positive tone at work for next year!