How to Plan an Office Holiday Party
Office Holiday Party Overview
Annually offices celebrate the holidays by having a party. These kinds of parties boost employees' spirits and allow them to enjoy the company of their colleagues and share the holidays with them.
Most office parties happen in the workplace and usually start just after office hours. Some will last for at least 4 hours and will have presentations, games, raffles, and some kind of awarding ceremony for noteworthy employees.
Pre-planning: One to two months before the event
If you were given the task to plan the party, then you need at least a month to plan and prepare for the party. Take note of these things you need to take care of for the party.
- Set the date. The first thing you need to decide is when the party will take place. Everything else will be planned around this date.
- Decide on the venue. We know that you'll probably have it in the office. The question is where? At the workplace or at one of the company's meeting rooms?
- Send save-the-date notice. As soon as you know the date and place to hold the party, then it's time to send save-the-dates cards to your officemates. It's a busy time of the year for everyone that is why it's important that you send the notice as early as possible.
- Reserve with your suppliers. You need to make sure suppliers for your party are available to do the task you need them to do, on the date of the event. Since it's the holiday season, most suppliers will have their hands full with orders like yours.
Planning the Details: 3 to 6 weeks before the party
This is an important time for you as the planner. The details of the party needs to be ironed out and you need ample time to finalize with your suppliers and to prepare. Ask another colleague to help you plan.
- Food – ensure that the supply of food and beverage for the duration of the event is enough. Plan for a wide variety of food to accommodate special dietary needs.
- Decorations – take time in planning for the office holiday party decorations. Since you're holding it in the office, making it festive is going to take a bit more effort. Aside from the usual Christmas decor, you can also think of a themed party to make the venue look less like an office and more like a party place.
- Program – all office parties have a program with which the party revolves around. So a well-prepared program will tell you if the party is good or bad. Your party should have fun games, entertainment, and good music.
- Prizes – add some more excitement and fun to the party by giving out prizes for games as well as for raffles. This will also keep everyone from going home early.
- Favors – office parties are not complete without some giveaway to commemorate the event. Some of the popular corporate party favors include personalized mugs, gift baskets with chocolate bars or some office supplies that has the company's name on it.
Office Holiday Party Etiquette FAQs
To create a successful office party, here are some things you need to know and consider when planning one.
What is the proper time to go to the party?
While you are not obliged to clock in or out at the party, it is still an office activity you are attending. Therefore, you must always make it a point to arrive on time.
Do I really have to attend the party?
Although it is not a requirement, attending the party shows that you are a team player and that you value your part in it. A good and valid excuse, though, will not be frowned upon as long as you give notice ahead of time.
What do I wear for the party?
If you are having a themed party, it is good to dress according to the theme. You can come as you're dressed at work, or bring a casual dress if you wear a uniform to work.
How should I behave at the party?
Enjoy at the party and don't think about work, but then don't also forget that you are still with your co-workers and inside company premises. It is best that you conduct yourself professionally and stay away from excessive eating, drinking, and partying.