When it comes to special event planning it is definitely that time of year. Well after the last hors d’oeuvre has been eaten and the final glass of champagne downed, hopefully the memory of a great party lingers. The ultimate goal when planning a work holiday celebration is a happy and satisfied guest!
One of our favorite parties of the year, the one we all look most forward to attending, is the work holiday gala. But for the one responsible for planning all those important details, it can be a pain in the…neck and is extremely stressful.
So YOU have been given the task of organizing the company holiday party. Let’s be frank, it can seem like a very intimidating undertaking if you’re not a hundred percent sure where to get started. But no worries, there’s lots of help to get you going.
Special Event Planning – What to Do, What to Do…
In addition to all of the other holiday planning and shopping on your to-do list, there are so many details to stay on top of. And numerous people, including the big boss, to ensure are happy and have a great time. Nope, no pressure at all!
Many a holiday parties have been planned with the greatest of intent. Sometimes, regardless of the hard work that went into the planning, mistakes can and will happen. In an effort to avoid what can become a costly mistake, let’s look at the don’ts of party planning. Think about the things that you know for sure will NOT be part of your holiday party planning. By thinking ahead, the don’ts will be at the top of your mind and will (hopefully) be avoidable.
So you’ve reviewed the don’ts…what next?
Special Event Planning – Knock, Knock. Who’s There? NEXT…
Next it’s time to think about all the dos. You know the what, when, who and where of it all to be sure that holiday party is not filled with bloopers but is purely a success.
There are so many things to consider; to theme or not to theme, date and location, what to serve, decorations, entertainment and games and the checklist goes on. The list should outline all the important factors of what to include all while keeping in mind the fun and joy of the guests.
Here are a couple of things to keep in mind when holiday party planning.
Budget – This is always the first thing to consider. Sometimes organizations can be unrealistic when budgeting for holiday get-togethers. So it is really important to know the firm budget before you ever put pen to paper. Your budget outcome will help you come up with an outline for the party. You may not have enough budget dollars for a sit down dinner and may decide to go with a stand-up reception instead. Or the beverage situation may have to be tweaked a time or two to fit your budget.
Company Traditions – It is imperative to keep in mind previous company holiday parties and to get staff input. Do a little research and talk with some long standing employees; you’ll be surprised at what you’ll learn. In turn, they will feel like part of the experience and you won’t ruffle any of those traditionalists’ feathers.
I suggest speaking with everyone, not just the long standing employees. Take a poll and survey them and you’ll find out what they want (what they really, really want). The planning process can be a great way to bring staff together and create solidarity and camaraderie. We will never, ever please everyone. But by including the staff, everyone will feel like they have contributed and this helps foster positive feelings all around.
Theme – ‘Tis the season for theme, theme, theme. It’s incredibly important that the theme you choose for your gala is suitable and appropriate. A theme that incorporates the feel and atmosphere of the affair. There are loads of party themes out there to choose from, but generally, a good rule follow is to stay away from any and all religious themes. There are so many different beliefs out there so your best bet is to avoid them all.
A theme will bring sparkle and brilliance to your soiree and can help to create a joyful party experience. Once you decide on the theme it can easily be carried over to the invitations, decor, food and beverages, entertainment and all the other party elements.
So don’t let something new intimidate you. You’re only a party planning newbie once. Go for the golden ring! Its holiday party time so get out there and start planning and utilizing all of the planning tools developed for this exact reason, to help! Before you know it, your colleagues will be enjoying their best holiday party ever!