Why (and How) to Plan a Company Holiday Party

Fall only just began. For most people, that means taking in the turning leaves, unboxing some autumn scarves and settling back into a routine after the busy summer. But for managers and corporate planning committees, fall means something different: It’s time to start planning for the holidays. (You need that 3 to 4-month lead time to secure the right venue, caterers and entertainment).

But inevitably, every year, someone poses the same set of questions and concerns. Are holiday parties really a wise use of company money? What’s their tangible ROI? What’s the most effective way to plan a company party if we want to extract value from the event?

First off, (spoiler alert) company parties are a wise investment. Second, crafting a value-driven holiday event is probably easier than most people think, provided you strike the right partnerships. In this post, let’s delve into why – and how – you can plan a mutually beneficial holiday party this year.

The Many Benefits of a Holiday Party

Let’s begin by dispelling the prevailing (but ultimately misguided) myth that holiday parties draw no tangible ROI. Just because a holiday party’s value is hard to see immediately, it doesn’t mean the value isn’t there. Here are a few of the many benefits of a holiday party.

  • The Direct Line Between Morale and Productivity: Company holiday parties express appreciation through fun, food and activities, all of which contribute to higher morale. And studies show that there’s a direct link between recognition-based morale and productivity.
  • Fostering an Attractive Work Culture for Retention and Talent Acquisition: Parties and associated displays of appreciation help cultivate a positive work culture, which can help you retain employees and attract new talent.
  • Strengthening Networks and Encouraging Team Symbiosis: Parties are social events where disparate teams can mingle and communicate, breaking down the office’s conventionally “siloed” divisions. This intermingling can strengthen your overall organization.

Of course, all these advantages are contingent on throwing the right holiday party. If you simply order ten pizzas and decorate the office with tinsel, your party won’t have the same cultural, social and morale effects as a properly hosted party. This leads us to our next question…

How to Throw a Mutually Beneficial Holiday Party

How do you throw a party that strengthens morale, advances workplace culture and promotes networking? To start, you get out of the office. When planning this December’s big appreciation event, partner with a quality corporate event venue that can add an elegant, “special occasion” flair to the proceedings. Here are a few other tips for throwing a mutually beneficial holiday party:

  • Start Early: Planning early ensures that you reserve a quality venue and caterer and have enough lead time to make the event special. Moreover, starting early allows you to work on the party incrementally, rather than diverting all your attention in the busy winter months of Q4.
  • Keep It Entertaining and Light: Don’t bog down the event with speeches and executive self-congratulation; it isn’t a marketing event, after all. Make it about the employees – their achievements, their
  • Focus on Food and Drinks: Team up with a corporate event venue with stellar in-house catering. Food is pivotal to the success of an employee-centric event as it demonstrates appreciation.
  • Make it Inclusive: Choose an inclusive venue and plan for a menu that accommodates various dietary restrictions and lifestyles. Excluding certain employees, however inadvertently, can be detrimental to overall morale.

Hopefully, this short guide equips you with the inspiration and advice you need to throw a successful company party. It might still be fall, but it’s never too early to plan ahead.

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