‘Tis the season for forced gift exchanges, awkward small talk with your supervisor’s spouse, and watching Karen from accounting get on the (non- existing) dance floor after one too many snowflake martinis.
Can a work holiday party actually be fun? Yes! While the venue and the menu/bar are the biggest factors to contribute to holiday party success, these insider tips will help you plan a party your colleagues will not soon forget:
• Plan early: The best venues get scooped up in September (or even earlier) by corporate planners who are on the ball….don’t wait until the last minute to research and book a venue.
• Get the invite right: Whether you opt for a traditional paper invite, or some version of Paperless Post/Evite/Punchbowl, be sure to include all the important details, a start and end time, how and when to RSVP, and most importantly…set the mood for the event!
• Think about layout & design: Comfy couches and lounge areas will encourage more casual conversation than traditional tables and chairs. Soft lighting is key! Bright lights can kill the mood instantly.
• Plan a plentiful menu: It’s a special occasion, and a time to show employees how much they are appreciated. Think outside the box with fun hors d’oeuvres, themed food stations, and desserts galore. Be creative with vegetarian and vegan options too.
• Include an element of surprise: Guests of any event love the “surprise and delight” moments. Hide small gifts under each chair, tuck gift cards into folded napkins, or have a caricature artist create portraits of each guest.
• Have a photo experience: Check out the newest options from a local company like Entertainment Specialists. Beyond the traditional photo booth, you can now offer open air photo booths, boomerangs, roaming photo booths, and a “vogue” photo booth.
• Give Back: Research local charities to partner with. In Boston, Rescuing Leftover Cuisine is a non profit that shows up to take left over food from events, to bring to local shelters and people in need. Despite what most people think, this is 100% legal and an easy, no cost way for your company to give to those in need during the holiday season.
Check out these fun & unique venues for your 2020 holiday party: