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How to Plan the Perfect Company Holiday Party

By: TSP Blog | @TSProckstars

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With the holiday season already here, it’s time for plenty of fun office festivities! If you’re in charge of planning a company holiday party for your workplace, it’s important to have a solid plan to make it an event that all of your guests will enjoy. One of the best ways to drive employee engagement, recognition and celebration of company culture is by throwing a holiday party.

Unfortunately, a recent study revealed that only 36 percent of professionals find company parties fun. Here’s a quick roadmap to ensure planning your holiday get together is engaging, festive and enjoyable for everyone involved.

DECIDE ON THE TYPE OF PARTY
Choosing what sort of holiday party you’ll have is the foundation to a successful event. Envisioning what you want the party to be like and the goal for the party should be the first step while planning. First, decide how big the event will be. Is it inclusive of all employees or just certain departments?

Parties are a way for people to unwind, but you can still decide how casual or formal your event is. If it’s more formal, make sure the decor and atmosphere reflect this tone. It’s important to make specifications about a dress code in the invitation so everyone is prepared and match the atmosphere you have planned.

MAKE A BUDGET
It’s crucial to ensure you are staying within your budget when planning the company holiday event. Make sure to make an event budget that includes everything you may need. Check with your boss to see what budget they have in mind and consider how it compares to your estimated costs. Be sure that your budget is one of the first things you address during the planning process as this will give you plenty of time for finalizing arrangements for the party.

CREATE A GUEST LIST
You should have a detailed list of everyone who is to be invited to the party. Make sure you’re clear to your co-workers about how many guests they will be able to invite. This will depend on how much space the venue will allow, so you might need to stipulate that only employees and their spouses can attend. Additionally, consider inviting clients that you would like to thank for their business to celebrate a successful year.

SET A DATE AND EVENT TIMELINE
While there’s no perfect day to plan a company party, some days are bound to work better than others. An event timeline is an essential part to manage the stress and planning of a great event. Know how far out to book the venue, schedule site visits, researching any conflicts and managing those conflicts will ensure your party goes well. Consider having a master document that clearly outlines each aspect of the soirée to limit your stress level.

SELECT A VENUE
While having the office party at the actual office might sound convenient, it might not be feasible depending upon the space limitations of the space. If you want to make your event memorable, it’s important to get the employees out of the office, so consider renting an event venue. This will allow your coworkers to connect on a more personal level and encourage them to talk about something other than business.

CHOOSE A CATERER
Food can make or break your event — it’s imperative that you pick a preferred caterer you can work with. Make sure the menu is suitable for all the dining needs of your guests, such as allergies or particular diets. Obviously, you won’t be able to tailor each meal, but do your best to accommodate everyone in order to make the event more memorable. Consider serving hors d'oeuvres before dinner is a good idea to keep everyone full and happy as they sip on holiday bubbly!

PLAN THE BAR
Drinks are just as important at the food when it comes to a company holiday party. From eggnog to hot chocolate and more — the options are endless. If you have the space to do so, set up a spectacular bar. However, if you’re serving alcohol, make sure there are limitations on how much each guest can consumer to avoid any awkward company holiday stories and to ensure everyone gets home safely.

The possibilities for a successful company party are endless! Use these helpful tips to guide you through the process to ensure a fun event your coworkers will talk about for years to come.

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