Top tips for planning a great office holiday party

How early is too early to start making holiday plans? The answer is, never – especially if you’re on your company’s party planning committee. Anyone who has been involved with planning a large-scale event can attest that they are a lot of work. You have to consider things like the budget, venue, activities and how many people are attending.

If you are planning on hosting a company holiday party in the coming months, here are a few suggestions that will make your life much easier.

  • Evaluate your timeline and start planning early – For many, the holiday party is a chance to thank employees for their hard work and commitment throughout the year. Since the holidays can be extremely busy, giving your team plenty of advance notice for your event allows them to put it in their calendars and budget for things like a babysitter or a cab ride home. A bonus is that the earlier you start planning, the more options are available for venues.
  • Ask your staff for input – If you are thinking about trying something new this year, ask your staff to submit suggestions about what they would like to do. Depending on the size of your company, they may be more interested in a family-friendly activity like a trampoline park or want a low-key evening at a brewery versus a fancy gala dinner. Providing opportunities for people to vote on what they would like to do will also help them feel that their opinion is valued.
  • Provide a variety of food and drinks – People always remember the food so it’s important to develop a menu that considers a wide range of dietary restrictions. Providing gluten-free, plant-based, halal and other options is a good idea so that everyone has something to eat. If you’re serving alcohol, it’s also good to have some non-alcoholic alternatives available.
  • Look into adding a virtual element – Some staff members may not be comfortable with or able to attend a big party but would still like to be participate in some way. This means coming up with in-person and hybrid components. It can be as simple as setting up a tripod with a camera to live stream the awards or speeches over Zoom or Microsoft Teams. Discuss potential options with your staff and party planning committee to figure out what would work best for them.
  • Consider volunteer or fundraising activities – The holidays are an opportunity to give back to your local community. A great team building activity could involve volunteering at a local shelter or participating in an adopt-a-family program.
  • Don’t forget to talk to your broker about insurance – You can be held liable for any injury or damage that happens to a guest, employee or the venue of your event — which is why insurance is critical. If you’re hosting your holiday party off-site, the venue will usually require event liability insurance and liquor liability insurance. Contact your Rogers Insurance special event insurance broker to find out what works best for your event and to get an event insurance quote today.


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