The Best Holiday Party Entertainment
Holiday cheer is not reserved for offices with the budget to rent out a grand atrium, stock an open bar, and curate a selection of artisanal hors d’oeuvres. Companies with small staffs and small budgets can still host memorable holiday parties that pack big fun.
Delight your employees with any of these small company holiday party ideas.
The Anti-Cookie Swap
While the rest of the world passes around Double-Chocolate Butter Nuggets and similarly rich holiday treats, your small company can break the mold by hosting an anti-cookie swap.
Challenge everyone to bring in their favorite healthy desserts with recipe cards so that guests (not to mention their families and friends) can benefit from the healthy holiday inspiration.
While you can never have too much holiday cheer, you can have too much holiday food. Employees will welcome a break from the cakes, cookies, and cheese cubes they encounter at every other seasonal gathering. Instead of contributing to the holiday excess, turn your company holiday party into a celebration of fitness.
Have everyone prepare their favorite fruit- or vegetable-based treat, provide some healthy packaged snacks, and pick a fitness class du jour to entertain employees for one fulfilling and meaningful hour.
Here are some fitness and wellness trends to choose from. We suggest getting employee input so you’re sure everyone will be comfortable with your selection.
- Yoga (Always a safe bet.)
- Meditation (A guided mindfulness meditation works perfectly for offices that include a range of fitness levels.)
- High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
- Vintage 80s aerobics
Family Day at the Office (a.k.a. Santa’s Workshop)
Get together to decorate the office, hire (or appoint) a lucky Santa, and then open your doors to coworkers’ guests and family members for a day of fun.
As coworkers get together to decorate and plan, this small company holiday party turns into several days of fun.
- Ask for volunteers to form a party committee. This group can iron out all the fun details that will make this event specific to your company.
- Have people volunteer to decorate their offices or cubes. (Mandatory decorating is not everyone’s idea of fun.)
- Have people volunteer for a special decorating project, the centerpiece of your holiday event—turning a conference room into Santa’s Workshop.
- Send out invitations.
- When the day comes, close shop early and open your doors for fun.
To up the decor game across the office, you can even include a traditional holiday decorating contest as part of your day of fun. Let a panel of your employees’ holiday guests judge and announce the contest winner as a grand finale to your event.
Here are some office decorating tips employees can use for inspiration:
- Create log-cabin cubicles using wrapping-paper rolls
- Make classic gingerbread houses with butcher paper.
- Turn walls into the perfect winter scenes.
- Make your own cozy fireplace.
Cocoa & Candy Canes: Artisanal Edition
Give everyone’s favorite hot cocoa and candy canes a classy, grown-up makeover, and you’ve got a worthy focus for your holiday office party.
All you need for this party is some fancy cocoa, fancy candy canes, and down-to-earth conversations, provided by your team. Throw on some festive tunes to pull everything together. (If your company is small enough and you have the budget for it, you could even order custom mugs for the occasion and let everyone take one home.)
Here are some resources for finding delicious, healthy versions of your favorite holiday treats.
Multicultural Holiday Trivia Night
Honor the diverse range of ways people celebrate the holidays with a night of multicultural holiday trivia. Break the mold of reindeer and Christmas trees and learn about holiday icons that don’t appear as decorations in every major department store.
- Prepare your list of questions and answers. (If you find 50 questions and you take a few snack and conversation breaks, you should have plenty of material for a night of fun.)
- Here are some resources:
- Green Global Travel: 60 christmas traditions around the world
- National Geographic: Holidays and Festivals Quiz (Not only winter holidays)
- LinkedIn: Not so Easy Multicultural Holiday Trivia Quiz
- History: Christmas Traditions Worldwide
- Choose hosts. This team will ask questions, hear answers, and call “right” or “wrong.”
- Appoint a scorekeeper. This person will, obviously, keep score. We recommend using a simple chalkboard/whiteboard scorekeeping system and splitting everyone into teams so the scorekeeper has to keep track of only a handful of team scores instead of 20+ individual scores.
- Purchase snacks and prizes.
Nontraditional Tree Contest
If a cubicle decorating contest doesn’t appeal to your employees, try a nontraditional tree contest instead. Give employees a week to create their best nontraditional tree and then host a star-studded, company-wide night of voting and awards to celebrate the winners.