Staff parties roll around more times a year than most of us – and our office budgets – like to admit. Whether you’re providing cake for someone who’s leaving, celebrating the end of the summer or downing champagne for Christmas, there are a few get togethers with your colleagues every year that are sometimes fun and sometimes not so much fun. If you’re involved in planning a party for your office, here are a few tips.
Remember, Too Many Cooks…
Although planning an entire party might be too much work for one person and a slightly unfair task, it also isn’t a good idea to get too many people involved. Even if it’s just an office party, you want a cohesive vision and if you have someone from accounts handing out flower garlands while someone from marketing is setting out snowman cupcakes, you’ll probably know that the dynamic just isn’t right. Gather a core team and stick to their expertise.
Consider Everyone There
It’s important to remember everyone in the office and the different needs they have. For instance, if someone has dietary needs, remember to provide food that they can eat – you don’t want someone who can’t eat dairy or gluten to spend the whole evening picking breadcrumbs off pieces of chicken and pretending to be having a good time. If there’s someone else who has problems with childcare on certain days, make sure you throw the party on a day that they can attend.
There’s very little that will entice people to a party more than free food. Even if you’re having a team building day, you should provide a lunch that people can enjoy – and not just limp sandwiches either. Hire a catering company to put on a nice spread for everyone – they work hard and deserve to be treated well. Likewise, if you’re going to a bar and putting some company money behind the bar, don’t be too stingy – you want people to be able to have more than one drink! Likewise, don’t leave too much money there – you don’t want anyone to get too drunk…
Activities are generally pretty essential for office parties, whether that’s enjoying a sit down meal together, a sports day in summer, or Secret Santa at Christmas parties. At sports days you can present people with trophies from companies like FCB – and if you’ve ever seen The Office, you could have your own version of The Dundies and hand out awards! It’s probably best to create your own titles though – ‘Hottest in the Office’ might cause a few problems…
Don’t Force Fun
Finally, although you should provide some sort of entertainment, remember that you can’t force people to have fun in the way that you want them to. Games that are too organised will just make everyone feel a little uncomfortable – you want them to feel as though they can kick back and relax as they enjoy the company of their colleagues. Organised fun is great, but over organised fun will feel more like work than your time in the office usually does!
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