6 ways to make your Xmas party stand out from the crowd
After a year of hard work, deadlines and at least one or two mini meltdowns, the office party is a chance for you and your team to blow-off steam. To avoid the cliché of sipping warm white wine in your festive jumper while you listen to Wham belt out cheesy Xmas party classics, early planning is essential. Involve your team, get creative and check out our ideas for making your event stand out from the crowd.
Pick your theme carefully
When it comes to choosing an event theme, you can get as creative as you like. Parties inspired by hit show Peaky Blinders are gaining popularity this year, as UK companies get set to turn the clock back to the 1920’s. Alternatively, you could choose a wintrier theme like Après ski or Narnia, and transform your space into a fawn-filled, snow covered forest or cosy lodge in the Alps. If you want to get your employees involved, you could even open a suggestions box for themes, with a prize awarded for the most popular idea.
Gamify your Xmas Party
Since we’re all permanently attached to our mobile phones and tablets, it makes sense for your company to take advantage of this addiction for the Xmas party. In addition to setting fun festive competitions on social media and getting your hashtags trending, you can use gamification to add a teambuilding element or another level of interaction to your event. Through a simple app your employees can take part in anything from Christmas-themed treasure hunts to interactive quizzes on dedicated tablets or other devices – and it’s a great way to help employees bond at the end of the year.
Host a Christmas festival
Mini break bookings to European Christmas markets sky rocket in the last two months of the year, with people searching Lastminute.com and Secret Escapes for affordable getaways. Not all your employees will have the time or money to dash off to Germany for that cup of steaming Glühwein, so why not bring the markets to them? Instead of the usual three-course meal or buffet, you can set up a traditional Christmas festival in your own office or an alternative venue nearby. If you’ve got plenty of outdoor space, you can even create a Winter Wonderland, with games, rides and entertainment. All the fun of a festival without the snaking queues you’ll find at London’s Hyde Park.
Reward your staff
A Xmas party should be more than a night of ill-advised office flirting and inappropriate photocopying. After a year of hard graft, it’s a time to reward staff for all their efforts and make sure they’re recognised in front of their peers. If you didn’t have an official awards night earlier in the year, the Christmas do is a good time to hold that glitzy ceremony. Whether you go for an Oscars style affair or something more low-key, a celebration of talent will definitely get people into the festive spirit.
Choose a unique venue
Sometimes a party needs a really good stage – so pick your venue carefully. If you want to put a twist on your Xmas party, choose somewhere quirky or unique that will match your brand values. Spectacular options include the Natural History Museum in central London, The Monastery in Manchester or even The Royal Yacht Britannia in Edinburgh. For those with smaller numbers or budgets, there’s plenty more unusual venue options dotted around every city in the UK. Simply work out how much you want to spend, the location and start the hunt! Don’t fancy the hassle? Enlist the help of your chosen events company to help venue find the perfect spot.
Extend the fun
Who says a Christmas do has to be in the evening? If you’d like to extend the festivities but you want to avoid going overboard on the beers too early, why not book an afternoon activity ahead of the big party? December is one of the busiest months in the calendar for shows and events, so there’s plenty of musicals and pantomimes to choose from. If you’d like to personalise the experience, get your employees involved in making suggestions. It might be challenging to pick one activity, so you can always offer a selection to choose from. If you include everything from a spa day to driving experiences, there’ll be something for everyone.