When you get right down to it most of us put on a ‘do’ every year but is it actually appreciated? Or are we just doing it out of duty? There is a sense of tradition in the office party I suppose. Whether it is a meal and a disco at a hotel, a black tie formal affair, or a few drinks and a buffet in the office we tend to see it as part of the Christmas cavalcade.
Of course we want to say thank you to the staff for their hard work and throwing a little celebration around the Christmas period is a great way to do this. But how often do we throw money and resources at this annual event only to wonder if anyone actually wanted it? Here are some suggestions to mix things up and maybe avoid a little bit of the financial sting over the festive season.
- Do you actually want the big party? If everyone wants to go and have the turkey and the dancing then by all means have the event. If not why put yourself through the stress for something that people are turning up to out of a sense of duty?
- How about an alternative event? Rather than try to squeeze your party into the Christmas madness ask if the staff would rather have an event in January instead. Rather than being just one more party in a season of parties you will probably be able to do something that will cheer everyone up mid winter. Not only that but venues will be far more open to negotiating price when business is slower.
- Do something different. While the company clown finds the Christmas party a perfect stage, many people are more introverted and would prefer something less boisterous. There are alternatives to the disco and dinner format such as days out or trips to entertainment events. In many cases these can also be lower in cost than the expensive party.
- Could you ditch the Christmas cards? Every year we send out a big batch of cards to our staff, clients, suppliers and so forth. They also send them to us and we all then throw them away in January. Why not consider sending an email Christmas card instead?
- Cut down on the decorations. Sometimes you see a work area overloaded with twinkling lights and huge garlands of tinsel. Instead of spending a fortune on the decorations this year why not go low key and tasteful. Celebrate but don’t over decorate.
You don’t need to be a Grinch or ‘bah humbug’ your way through the festive season to save a few pounds.
Oh and yes, I admit it. I am still grimacing at the use of ‘crackers’ in the title.