After a hard year of work, a Christmas party is a well-deserved treat for employees but getting it right can prove difficult. Finding a venue that works for you, your company culture and your budget can present obstacles at every turn, so to keep you on track this Christmas we have put together some helpful tips on creating the best office party from finding the right venue to securing entertainment which will impress your employees.

Shared party

A shared party could be a great idea for your office this year. Sharing your office party with another business allows you to make use of bigger and more interesting venues (we’ll cover some of these later) which would otherwise be unnecessarily large and expensive. By attending with other businesses even small businesses can get their hands on large and extravagant venues which offer a vibrant party atmosphere on a scale grander than can be found in many smaller or less expensive venues.

Although, shared parties do not have to be expensive. Many places such as hotels will host parties which are inexpensive – their only condition being a minimum number of attendees hence the need to partner up with another business.

Unique venue

It seems to be generally accepted that taking the office party out of the office is a good idea. It reduces the temptation to talk about work and helps people feel more relaxed but unless you can find a great venue you’ll probably end up staying in the office anyway. Computers, print finishing equipment and office supplies may be brilliant for getting work done but they don’t tend to create the right atmosphere for a party.

The trick to finding a great venue may be to find somewhere completely unique. You are looking for somewhere which will be ingrained in your employee’s memory, so whilst a run of the mill bar may be good it isn’t the standout venue you are looking for.

Many museums and aquatic and marine life centres offer party hosting and they are two great examples of interesting venues which will leave a lasting impression. For a splash of activity other great venues consist of trampoline parks, golf ranges and rock climbing centres. All of these examples are different to the typical venues selected for Christmas parties and offer everything from a relaxed area to have a few drinks to an outgoing activity – just make sure you select the option everyone can get involved in.

Make a day of it

Piggybacking on the idea of a cool and unique venue it may be worth making your office party a full day out. There are a multitude of great venues which unlike the ones above don’t host parties. This, however, does not make them any less of a great idea. Whether you are a young start-up of millennials or a larger, more corporate business there is a venue which could be perfect for your employees just around the corner. A tour of Bletchley Park for example, may be the best use of a day for companies in the web and tech industry and it puts less pressure on finding an awesome venue for the evening’s drinks.

Informal networking event

Informal networking events can be a lot of fun the only problem is that they are typically reserved for the sales team. The office Christmas party offers the perfect opportunity for you to let the rest of your team show their passion and in-depth knowledge of your business, products, services and more, all whilst having fun with an activity such as dart gun battles, music or rock climbing. Not only could this be a smart move in terms of networking as prospects get the chance to see the people who are often behind the scenes it combines work and fun and shows that they can go hand in hand. Also by attending someone else’s networking event you do not have to worry about organising entertainment or an activity and the drinks will likely be included too.

Entertainment

If the last two tips are not your thing then you probably still have some entertainment to sort out. Again, like the venue, selecting something different which will stand out in your employee’s mind is a good idea, but you know your employees better than us and maybe there’s a concurrent love for indie music which makes an indie bar a no-brainer or a love for cricket which leaves a day at the local cricket ground hard to beat. However, if nothing strikes you as an obvious winner then try going off the beaten track with some unexpected entertainment.

Comedy is one possible option which fits the requirements. Not only does everyone else love to laugh but finding a good comedy club ticks the boxes for both venue and entertainment. For more formal events such as a sit-down dinner a more intermittent form of entertainment such as a magician will be sufficient in adding a layer of fun on top of a good corporate Christmas party. Even less obvious but equally fun entertainment ideas include aerial artistes or walk about characters. Whether you are looking to leave your employees with the wow factor or in fits of laughter there is some unexpected entertainment available which will get the desired reaction.

Using these five tips in any combination you should be able to put together a great Christmas party with amazing entertainment at an awesome venue. Make sure you implement these tips for a great finish to the year and check out our range of print finishing supplies to see how we can help your business have a great start to the new year.

Further reading on your office Christmas party

Does your business turn over between £50,000 and £500,000? If so, you are eligible for the new Small Business Grants initiative from SmallBusiness.co.uk. We’re giving away £5,000 every month in a free-to-enter competition. Apply now by clicking here. Good luck!

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