Tis the season for annual holiday lunches, dinners and get togethers at the office or outside of the office. Each year this is always a hot “HR” topic for companies - regardless of their size. What do we do? Who do we invite? Daytime or nighttime? What’s our budget? Do we allow alcohol?
As you grow your business you quickly realize that it’s not just your venue and budget that begins to grow but your overall corporate responsibilities begin to scale.
The Keynote Team has put together our favorite list of twelve holiday party DO’S (yes we took inspiration from the 12 days of Christmas). Regardless of whether this is your first holiday party, your 6th or your 20th, these tips will ensure you have a festive gathering with your team while also being prudent and responsible.
1) Inclusive Event Planning
Involve your employees in as much of the event planning as possible.
2) Book it for the "off-season"
Consider booking the party before or after the busy holiday season so that employees are not faced with conflicts. Remember to communicate the date as soon as possible even if you have to confirm the venue, time, and other details at a later date.
3)Find an Accessible Location
Find a venue that can accommodate your employees and their guests comfortably and is in a central location that is accessible for employees, especially those that need assistance.
4)Keep it Going So People Stay
Ensure the venue is open long enough so that the party does not need to relocate to another location for any “after-parties”.
5)Easy and Safe Transportation
Ensure there is a well lit parking lot and that the venue is accessible by public transit, taxi, and other forms of transportation. Best practice: Set up a corporate Uber account and/or provide taxi chits upon arrival or ahead of time and/or arrange to have expense forms sent out ahead of time with a reminder afterwards so employees can expense their rides home.
6)Accommodate Everybody's Diet
Ensure the venue has the ability to accommodate a variety of dietary requirements and/or restrictions.
7)Are you not entertained!?
Enhance your party experience by investing in a photo booth, a magician during dinner and/or an after dinner comedian.
8)Have Before and After Snacks
Ensure that there are early and late night snacks (depending on how long you expect the party to go).
9)Smart Serve Certification
Select a venue that has staff serving alcohol who are Smart Serve certified (such as the training provided through https://www.smartserve.ca/en/).
10)Provide Drink Tickets
Provide drink tickets (including non-alcoholic drinks) to employees (common practice is two (2) per person) and have a variety of non alcoholic beverages available.
11)Pre Party Communication
A few days prior to the holiday party have a company leader and/or HR send a reminder email to the employees outlining the details of the event, with reminders about social media policies, appropriate behavior (this is a company event!) and safe transportation.
12)You Should Lead By Example
If you don’t want your team members, employees and/or colleagues to embarrass themselves, simply lead by example.