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The Office Holiday Party: Our Expert Dos and Don'ts for Planning a Stellar Event!

Plan a Stellar Office Party this Year!
When it comes to the office holiday party, we all know (or should know) the standard dos and don'ts: don't over-consume...don't talk shop, politics, or religion; do dress appropriately...do put away your phone...

But what about planning the office party? It can be tricky business navigating the rights and wrongs of an important event like this. Lucky for you we've done it more than a few times and can report back on our learnings!

Do: give it a theme. Having a central idea of what the evening will entail will help you decide what decorations to shop for, what kind of food to provide, and where to have your event. It will also create excitement about the party, so you'll have better participation. One year, our theme was all about games: the venue was a sports bar, the giveaways were board games, and the entertainment was all of us playing Minute to Win It games. It was great fun for the attendees, and also a big help for the planners to have a specific focus.

Don't: invite pandemonium. Make sure you assign seating—and also make sure each table has a mix of people from different departments. If you use cool placeholders, all the better! This keeps it organized for you and helps everyone quickly figure out where to be when they're called to assembly. Plus, you'll help them get to know their coworkers better, while also discouraging clique-like behavior that can make others feel excluded. What we love is that every year we see new (or stronger) relationships form from connections made at our parties.

Don't: under-plan the evening: The best parties have a schedule that distributes activities over the entire evening. This way, you encourage your attendees to stay for all the festivities. A typical Baudville party starts with casual mingling and refreshments, followed by special announcements, dinner, entertainment, and award presentations. Interspersed are photo opportunities, more mingling, and prize giveaways. It makes for a fun-filled night that never loses steam.

Do: factor in appreciation. In addition to presenting awards for those who have gone above and beyond over the past year, remember to say thank you. Each and every one of your team members makes an important contribution to your business success—don't miss this opportunity to express your gratitude! A heartfelt speech from the CEO is a nice touch, but you can also make sure everyone is thanked with a small gift at their place-setting. At Baudville, we traditionally give Spinner Ornaments. They can be personalized on the back and they come gift boxed with a space inside for a note, making each one a special keepsake of the evening.
•   Make it convenient. Choose a night that works best for most people (we like Friday) and a central location that's easy for everyone to get to.

•  Enjoy yourself. If you're the planner, or even if you're not, this is a busy time. Promise yourself that you'll relax on this night and just have fun. That's the point, after all!

•  Give a takeaway. Whether it's a holiday gift or a special note from leadership, give your team an expression of appreciation that will keep on giving after the party's over.
"Do You Have Celebrities in Your Midst? "
Learn about the value of award ceremonies in this article!

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