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Edmonton, Alberta
Canada, T5G 3J5
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Top Tips To Throwing A Successful Holiday Office Party

 

A lot of people feel paralyzed at the thought of having to plan the holiday office party. Although it may require a lot of work, the steps for throwing a successful office party can be done without much stress if you know what you're doing.

It is the duty of the individual organizing the party to throw a unique party that is lacking in the shock and disappointment area. The key is to try and create an event that your coworkers will want to attend and won't forget anytime soon.

Invitations

The first step is selecting the date that you will be holding your holiday office party. Try to select a date that isn't going to conflict with any significant business obligations, such as inventory. If you know there is a month of work that is busier, then try not to plan your party in that time frame.

Fridays tend to be a good choice as people are not working on the weekend. If you start your party a few hours after work ends, it'll give your guests time to go home and change before coming to the event. Additionally, starting the party earlier will likely mean it won't run too late.

Try to give your guests one month notice of your fantastic holiday office party so they can save the date and make any necessary arrangements. You may want to send out a memo to all employees letting them know about the event.

Ask people to RSVP by a certain date. This will give you a general idea about how big the party will be. You may want to include something in your invitation that tells employees whether they're able to bring a guest. Allowing employees to bring their spouses will give you more people at your holiday office party. This can make things a little complicated to control and, of course, more expensive to hold.

Your invitations should have a clear subject line and include the following information:

1.    Who is invited

2.    What to expect (dancing, dinner, etc.)

3.    The dress code

4.    Where the event will be held

5.    The date and time of the party

6.    Why you're holding the party

7.    How much it costs to attend (if any)

You may want to consider putting a provision on the invitation clearly stating that any alcohol consumed by the guest at the party is the responsibility of the guest and the company can't be held accountable for anything that may or may not result of that to protect the company from any possible lawsuits. Ensure that guests understand that by RSVPing they accept the terms and conditions stated within the invitation. A lot of people tend to avoid holiday office parties, so try to encourage employees to at least make an appearance.

Budgeting

Find out how your holiday office party will be paid for. Will you have sponsors? Is there a cover charge? Will guests have to pay their own way? The answers to these questions will help form the type of party you have and the funds available to you for party planning.

The amount of guests you have will determine how much your holiday office party will cost per person. Each guest consumes roughly around three or four drinks and about a dozen snacks. Keep that in mind when you're initially planning your event.

Try to organize a few different activities. Not only will organizing activities show that you are in control, but it will also minimize the boredom of your guests. Things like raffles, gift exchanges, and prize giveaways tend to work well.

Selecting The Food

Finger foods tend to be an excellent choice at holiday office parties as they allow guests to snack and mingle at the same time.

You can hire a caterer if your budget allows you to do so, or you can optionally go to a restaurant. If you decide to go with a caterer, remember to be upfront with them about your budget and the amount of guests you're expecting. The caterer will take care of everything else for you. Just check in with him/her to ensure everything is going according to schedule.

Decide what types of beverages you are going to serve. You can do something simple like an alcoholic and a non-alcoholic punch, or you can go all out with a bar. Try to ensure you have both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages as many people like to drink something non-alcoholic near the end of the night when they're finished drinking.

Selecting The Perfect Location

Once your RSVP date has come and gone, ensure your original location is large enough to accommodate all your guests. If you have a room that's too large, your party may appear to be boring and lackluster. In order to figure out how large of a room you need, take the number of expected guests and add twenty five percent. The reason for this is there are always a few people who don’t think they can make it, but can at the last minute.

Select an atmosphere that is pleasing to the senses without any overbearing music, as people like to mingle at parties. Music that is too loud will make it very difficult for guests to talk. It is important to ensure that there is ample parking available for guests. When possible, try to select a location close to bus stops and subway stations.

If you are looking for a venue to host your holiday party you can read more on our holiday office party page.