Holiday Party Tips
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Holiday Party Tips

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Planning a Memorable Holiday Party

If you find yourself on a company holiday party committee (or as a committee of one), you will want your party to be the one that employees will remember!  Below are several suggestions from a variety of party experts to help you make your party a success.

The best holiday parties generally take place somewhere outside of the office.  Having the party in the location where employees work, next to their computers and long to-do lists, makes it seem more appropriate to talk about work instead of socializing.  Your holiday event is a reward for a year of hard work, and the focus should definitely be on fun!

Selecting a venue that is already beautifully decorated for the holidays is a great way to save time and money.  Also, be sure that nice linens and centerpieces are included for your event so that you won’t need to rent them from a separate vendor.  If you want to add even more decorating bling, have special lighting and gobos set up (these can often be done by the entertainment company that provides your party music).  Lighting can create a major impact and can add greatly to your party theme.

Take the time to be creative when developing a theme so that your event is unique.  Your fellow employees will appreciate your efforts, and there are so many possibilities.  If your venue offers party planners, don’t hesitate to ask them for ideas and take advantage of their experience.  They know what guests like and what resources will be needed to pull off a successful event.

Select a menu that fits your theme and then decide how it will be served; will there be passed hors d’oeuvres?  Will there be a sit-down dinner or a buffet?  Also, you should try to provide some vegetarian options. Keep in mind that the staffing needs for each menu option are different, and that can affect the final cost.

To make it possible for most employees to attend, you might want to consider having the party on a night of the week other than a Friday or Saturday.  Because there are just so many activities going on during the holiday season, that may make it difficult to find a weekend date when employees don’t have other commitments.  You might also reduce the event costs if you pick a week night that is less in demand, like a Monday.  A luncheon or afternoon event can be another good choice to avoid conflicts and to stay within your budget.  Send out a “Save the Date” email as soon as possible after booking the venue to get onto everyone’s calendar!

Finally, if you can expand your guest list to include more than just employees, inviting families and/or associates, employees can meet some new people during the event.  This creates a richer social experience and a more enjoyable event for everyone who attends.

Post by Sheila Palka