The holiday season is fast approaching - holiday décor has been out in stores for weeks and the Hallmark channel is already airing their lineup. The holiday season isn’t just a time to get families and friends together, it also allows for companies and colleagues to put work aside and spend quality time with each other. For many companies, the annual holiday party is the one event where employees get to let loose.
As lovers of all things events, Relish Catering wants to help you to delight your team and host a memorable event for them – check out their tips for hosting the ultimate corporate holiday party!
Picking a venue can be a tough one with so many variables that come into play when trying to satisfy a large crowd. Here are some guidelines and items to consider in your decision making process.
Getting a venue BOOKED is the first step to having a successful holiday corporate party! Depending on the size of your company, it might make the most sense to host your holiday party off-site to accommodate employees and their +1’s. Recently, it’s become more acceptable to hold the ‘holiday party’ during a non-traditional time (January – February) to gain access to off-peak venue rates and save big bucks on a major cost. If you’re looking for some options, click here to see some awesome Colorado event venue listings on the Wedding Sites and Services website, or take a look at Relish’s Approved Vendor List.
Additionally, when choosing a venue for your party consider where the majority of your employees live and decide if it’s most convenient to host the event near where the majority of the employees live, or closer to the office since it’s a familiar location. When it comes to transportation it’s important to find out and communicate if the venue offers ample parking, or if there is parking nearby. If alcohol is to be provided at the event, make sure to encourage employees to select a designated driver or use ride share programs like Lyft or Uber. There are also some great event transportation options for hire here.
When picking a venue, be sure to ask what services and amenities are included with the rental. If the venue is able to provide rental items like tables, chairs and linens, it can help save money in the end. If there will be any type of presentation that requires audio/visual equipment, make sure to ask whether the venue has built-in A/V capabilities.
The next step for a successful holiday corporate party is picking the right food, because your employees WILL expect to be fed and the food is typically one of the highlights of the event! There are a number of tips and tricks to help you stay in budget while still providing an excellent meal.
Depending on your company you may already have an idea of your employee’s food preferences. Sometimes, it’s safe to stick to what you know – or this can be a great opportunity to poll your guests to get a sense of their preferences. Take this moment to consider any dietary restrictions or allergies.
Are you hosting a simple gathering or are you weaving in other elements like group activities and speeches? Planning ahead and having a rough timeline of the event can help you decide on the best way to have your food served, for example whether it makes more sense to serve a buffet, a plated meal or have interactive food stations for your guests to visit throughout the event.
Before finalizing menu choices, check the number of people who have RSVP’d and make final menu decisions based on that information.
When organizing a holiday party consider whether you should provide wine, beer or spirits. Of course you want your employees to enjoy themselves and have a good time, but still keep company culture and code of conduct in mind.
A good idea is limiting the amount of alcohol available at the event - this can be done by providing drink tickets or limiting the amount of time the bar will be open. In addition, there should always be trained bartenders used to serve alcohol.
If you do choose to serve alcohol at your corporate holiday party, alcohol portioning can be tricky! Here’s a simple tool to make this easier for you. This Alcohol Calculator will provide a rough idea on how much alcohol would be needed at your event based on the number of guests and type of bar you’d like to have. Additionally, here are some great Colorado liquor providers that specialize in providing alcohol and bar staffing for your event.
You know the saying: “Eat, Drink and be Merry” - Besides the food and drinks, having some fun activities planned can really help inject some real holiday spirit into your party.
Here are some ideas that will keep your guests talking about for weeks!
Give your party an identity! By adding a theme, your employees will be more likely to recall it due to its unique nature. Using a theme will also help create an ecosystem where the decorations, food and drinks work together in unison.
The holiday corporate party can be an opportunity for people from different teams to interact with each other and get a chance to know one another on a new level. Party games provide the perfect way to foster group cohesion. This can be done simply by dividing people into teams and giving a scavenger hunt or having a holiday movie trivia. Your DJ or entertainment can also help drive guest interaction or even consider having a Dance Instructor come and teach your guests some fun group dances!
Renting a photo booth or having a batch of disposable cameras on site can be a great way to capture memories and provide individuals with the opportunity to mingle, be silly and strike a pose!
Having a holiday corporate party is a great way to increase workplace morale, show appreciation and strengthen the bond among colleagues.
Relish Catering loves spreading holiday joy with individuals and companies they work with and want to help you do the same!