Planning the Perfect Company Holiday Party

The company culture is just as important to a business’s success as any other aspect. Keeping your employees engaged in the company through various social activities allows them to feel celebrated and that their happiness is important. With the holidays quickly approaching, the question of “What are the plans for the holiday party?” may begin to arise. Some companies avoid these parties completely, just to avoid unnecessary drama. However, scrapping a holiday party altogether may not be the best option if you’re looking to maintain or grow morale into the New Year, so be sure to plan a celebration that best fits your company and employees – with minimal risk of turning into an HR nightmare.

Why the Holiday Party is Important

For many employees, the holiday party or other company social event may be the only real-time they socialize with others, whether due to being busy at work, telecommuting, or working in separate locations. It can be a great time to converse with those that may only typically communicate via email or telephone, facilitating a better working relationship. When significant others or families are also invited, it allows employees to get to know one another on a more personal level, as well.

Holiday parties may also help to improve employee morale, keeping employees engaged, knowing their company takes the time and resources to provide them with a special celebration. They work hard throughout the year, contributing to the company’s overall success, so it is as much a party for them as it is for the holiday season. Plus, with the holidays being at the end of the year, it’s the perfect way to start off the New Year with positivity.

What Makes for a Good Holiday Party?

Company holiday parties require a bit more careful thought than a typical get-together. Thinking about the following will help make your planning easier:

  • As most businesses have a diverse workforce, it is important to leave celebrations non-denominational to facilitate an inclusive environment.
  • Be sure to take into consideration the location – would you be comfortable bringing a client there? If not, it would probably be best to find somewhere different.
  • Don’t make the party mandatory. Employee morale won’t improve much (if any) when a so-called “party” is a requirement. Plus, it could be in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
  • Planning on including alcoholic beverages? Keep any risks at a minimum by hiring a professional bartender, cutting off service at least one hour prior to the end of the event, and arranging for company-paid transportation and encourage employees to take advantage.
  • Allow employees to bring spouses or significant others, and be sure to remind employees that, while fun is encouraged, misconduct will not be tolerated. Both of these will help prevent any inappropriate or regrettable behavior.
  • If you are bringing in outside entertainment or preparing any surprises, ensure it won’t lead to embarrassing or offending any of your employees. If in doubt – leave it out.

Of course, planning the perfect holiday party will vary from company to company as every office is different. Knowing your employees and what activities they best respond to is the first step in providing a great celebration. Keep people engaged throughout the year and allow honest and open feedback using our Stay Interviews and SurveyRight® Employee Engagement Surveys.

Each person on your team is important – make sure they feel that way. We are here to help outsource various organizational surveys to measure your employee’s perceptions in real-time, allowing your company to continuously improve and succeed.

For more information about our services, or to schedule a demo, contact us today.