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Tips for Planning Your Holiday Party

It is that time of year again and the holidays are right around the corner. For many companies, this means it is time for the annual holiday party. Holiday parties are an opportunity to gather together, show appreciation for your team, and to celebrate the year’s successes. Below are a few tips from EctoHR, Inc. for making your holiday party a success.

Know your employees. When planning the theme and details of the party, be sure to consider your group as a whole. This includes determining the appropriate time and location of your party, planning activities, and other details. If a significant segment of your staff commutes a long distance to work or has children, it may make more sense to have the party at the office during or immediately following work hours. Activities at the party should accommodate your employees, and their interests should be incorporated as much as possible. While having fun activities can be a great idea, the annual holiday event is not the time to make someone uncomfortable or feel alienated from the group.

Communication. Much like in business, communication is key for the success of the party. This means detailed descriptions of the guest list, proper attire, food and beverages provided, and all other details to ensure your employees know exactly what they can expect. When sending the invite, specify whether or not spouses and/or children are welcome. For example, if spouses are truly optional, let your team know. Let people see the agenda in advance so they can plan appropriately and not be left to guess as they arrange their personal life around the party.

Alcohol. Determine your alcohol policy. If you do decide to provide alcohol, make your guests feel comfortable enjoying a beverage in front of you and their co-workers. However, it is most important that employees be reminded to be responsible and for the employer to arrange alternate transportation for employees that consume too much at the party. Another suggestion is to stick to beer and wine and to avoid serving hard liquor or other spirits.

Incorporate Recognition. The holiday party is a way to gather your employees and celebrate all of the hard work and accomplishments throughout the year. It is important to incorporate employee recognition into the event. While small gifts or awards are always a nice touch, it is essential to make sure you as an employer take the time to thank your employees individually, regardless of their position in the company. If you have a large staff, take the time before the party to refresh yourself on the background and accomplishments of your team – it will go a long way toward showing them that you care. Employee recognition is a great way to boost morale and will lead to a successful and energized start to the New Year for your Company.

By following our basic planning tips above, you can alleviate some of the stress of planning and help ensure your holiday party is a success. Remember – EctoHR is here to help! If you have any questions or need assistance planning your holiday party, contact a member of our team at or 810.534.0170.

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