How to Plan a Work Party

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You are in charge of putting on a party for the employees of the company you work for. A work party could range from an “in-office” party to a barbecue to a Christmas Party. There is a lot of work that goes into planning a work party, as there is for any big event. Here are some steps to follow that will help planning a work party go a little more smoothly.

Things You'll Need

  • Meal Plan
  • Invitations or flyers
  • Agenda for the evening
  • Committee
  • Form a party committee. If you don’t have anyone assigned to help you, ask a few of your coworkers to help you put the party together. With more than one person planning it, it will not be as stressful and will run more smoothly. Remember, with a committee, you need to delegate activities--don’t take it all on yourself unless you have to.

  • Decide on a date. What time of year do you want to have the party? If it’s going to be during the summer, you might think about putting on a barbecue. If it’s a Christmas party, you might think about having it at a restaurant or in a billiard hall. If it’s a Halloween Party, you might just have it in your office. Where you have the party is based a lot on when you have the party.

  • Create invitations or flyers. You can mail formal invitations, however, it will save time and money to create a flyer on the computer and then make photo copies. You can make the copies on colored paper so they will stand out from everyday paperwork. For example, when making Christmas party flyers, copy them on red or green paper. For Halloween flyers, copy them on orange paper. You can put them in employees’ cubbies or include the flyers with paychecks or pay stubs. Be sure to send reminder emails about the party to employees.

  • Do a head count. Figure out how many people work for the company and plan on everybody attending. Decide if it will be a family affair or just employees and their spouses. If it is a formal event, make it mandatory for people to RSVP by a given date. If it is an informal family event, create a list in Microsoft word of employees and how many members are in their family. This is an easier task if it is a smaller company. If it is a larger company, count the number of employees and multiply times four--which includes the employee, a spouse, and two children. This will give you a good estimate to work from as far as ordering food goes.

  • Come up with a meal plan. Decide how much you have in budget for the work party. If there are a lot of people and you don’t have enough money to put on a full meal, try a bunch of appetizers or finger foods. You can go to big box stores, such as Costco or Sam’s Club, and pick up large quantities of food inexpensively. If it’s a family party, limit the amount of alcohol present. Have soda and water available.

  • Putting up decorations. Look for decorations surrounding the theme of your party. For example, look for Christmas decorations for a Christmas party and patriotic themes for a Fourth of July party. You can find decorations at stores such as Target, Wal-Mart, or the Dollar Store and not spend a ton of money.

  • Decide on activities. If the party is at a billiard pool, be sure to have a bunch of pool tables rented. If it is a Christmas party at a restaurant, you might consider having a deejay for dancing and singing Christmas carols at the end. If it is a barbecue, you might consider having volleyball, a dunk tank, or horseshoes. At each of them, consider having a raffle to keep people at the event longer. Offer several different prizes and make them interesting so employees will want to attend the next work party.

  • Arrive at the party early. If you are running the party, be sure to arrive with plenty of time to set up and direct people where to go. Be sure to socialize with your coworkers and bosses. Say thank you if people comment on how fun the party is. Stay calm and have fun with it.

Tips & Warnings

  • Ask a few of your coworkers to help you plan the party if you don’t have a committee assigned to help you. It may be very stressful to do it yourself. Remember to delegate tasks to members of the committee.
  • Do not be late to the party. You need to be to the party site early to help set up and direct people where to go. It’s nice to get complimented on the success of your get-together as well.

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