Ultimate Guide on Hosting the Best Business Holiday Party
December is the festive month when employees have started counting down to holidays. They have worked hard all year and now deserve a relaxing, peaceful holiday. It’s also time to rearward employees and staff during the festive season. So why nothost a fun business holiday party?
Business holiday parties are great for company morale – they allow employees to let down their guard and have fun. However, as an HR manager or organiser, you don’t want to throw a lame/boring party where employees feel attending is part of their work. It’s about making it fun and an event employees wish to attend.
Are you now wondering how to host the best business holiday party? Don’t worry; we have some simple steps you can follow. So, apply these steps to the party that best fits your business and employees.
Steps To Hosting a Business Holiday Party
1. Start Planning Early
Planning a business holiday party is not as easy as it seems, especially if you want it to be great. Yes, you could just order pizzas and sodas to the office and host the party during lunch hour – but you know your business can do better!
You are reading this article cause you want to host the best holiday party that is enjoyed and something employees look forward to. However, you must start planning early and understanding what can be done or what employees want.
The basic plan can include what kind of party you will be hosting – after office hours or during hours, in the office or out. The earlier you start, the less stressful it will be and the more options (places book out very fast during the festive month). Try to start at least 2-3 weeks before the main party.
2. Budget Appropriately
Knowing what kind of budget you have is essential. The budget greatly affects how big you can go and what type of event you can plan. The budget should be enough for the venue deposit, booking fee, food, drinks, entertainment, and gifts.
Hosting the best business holiday party doesn’t have to be expensive, but don’t make it too cheap. Get an appropriate budget from the head managers and prioritise what you want to spend the most on.
For example, you may want to spend more on the venue and food than gifts. People will remember the experience, location, and possibly food more than anything.
3. Choose The Best Date and Time
Date and time are crucial to any business holiday party. You don’t want it to be too close to the Christmas holidays. Try to host it one week before Christmas or mid-January. The best dates will allow more people to attend and feel involved.
Time can make or break the attendee list; do you want it during work hours or after? They both have advantages and disadvantages. It all depends on your plan and your business.
During work hours may have more attendees but won’t allow much flexibility on activities. After-work hours increase the choices of the party but may have fewer attendees. We suggest if the budget and plan is large – do it after work and ask the head managers if everyone can finish 1-2 hour before office hours.
A secret tip to increase employee attendees is bribing employees with free alcohol – very few will say no to this.
4. Book Venue
It’s time to put the plans into action. One of the first steps is booking the venue if you have decided to host it outside the office. The venue could be anywhere from a bowling alley, yacht, or restaurant to a club. Depending on the size of your business, you will have to book early and put down a venue deposit.
For example, many business holiday parties in Hong Kong are held on a yacht, hotel hall or restaurant/bar. After you have booked the venue, you know the party is on. Just have a few options for the venue, as you may not get your first option.
5. Have A Theme
A theme makes the business holiday party more fun and links everyone together. No matter whether a CEO or intern, everyone must follow the theme, no matter what. Try to make it funny, festive, and a bit silly.
The theme must be easy and shouldn’t be difficult to find/follow. For example, a great Christmas party theme is ugly Christmas jumpers, and the worst jumper wins a prize.
6. Choose A Caterer (If Not Provided by Venue)
Your venue may provide the food and drinks, or it will be another thing to add to your list. Depending on your budget, you need to hire a reasonable caterer offering great food and beverages.
Many caterers provide great packages with various food choices and drinks. Just make sure you note down employee allergies and diet restrictions. The food should fit the time and duration.
For example, if it’s just a 1–2-hour party, maybe just finger food and drinks. On the other hand, if it’s a dinner party, it should be large portions and filling. Also, make sure the alcohol doesn’t run out too early.
7. Purchase Or Check Insurance Cover
Hosting an event has risks, from injuries to property damage. Likewise, hosting a business holiday party has many event risks depending on the size of the party and venue. The bigger the party, the higher the chance of accidents. To help deal with possible event risks, hosts must purchase insurance.
Hosts may need to purchase event insurance to cover attendee injuries or any possible damage to the venue. The business is always liable for any possible accidents during the party. Event insurance will help cover the costs of injury and damage.
Hosting businesses may also want to check if their employee compensation will cover employee injuries at an office/workplace party.
8. Send Invitations
It’s that time to send the email that invites everyone to the business holiday party. Of course, some will rsvp, and some may decline; it is nearly impossible that everyone will attend. Be ready for dropouts even close to the party.
Just make sure you have an organised file that keeps track of who’s coming and to get a rough idea. Send the invitation at least two weeks before the date to build up a hype for the party.
9. Prepare Gift Bags
Is it even a holiday party without gifts, especially Christmas? A successful business holiday party involves small gifts for employees that attend. The gifts could even be handed out like an award show.
These small gifts and the party represents that the company care about each employee and respects the hard work they have put in over the year. The gifts don’t have to be expensive- “it’s the thought that counts”.
10. Make It Fun
Finally, make the business holiday party fun! You have spent weeks planning, and now it is time to make sure everything fits together. Employees are talking to each other, drinks are flowing, food is getting eaten, and most importantly, there are smiles all around.
There should be no talk of work, and every time someone talks about work-there should be a punishment. However, just ensure that no one is overdrinking, and everyone is safe. Even though you have insurance, avoiding injuries and damages to the venue is better.
A business holiday party is a great way to celebrate a successful year, appreciate hard work and improve employee relations.