13 Christmas Party Hacks
1. Money, money, money…
Yes we said it! Knowing your budget from the start will save you time, energy and ensure expectations are realistic and achievable. Remember to factor in all elements of the party, from transport, accommodation, VAT, upgrades, theming, late licence, microphones for speeches, branding the venue in corporate colours etc. We have a checklist which we send event bookers if they need it (every little helps).
2. Get social
Create a social committee or a team to assist with the party planning, the party is a big deal, share the work load, ideas, responsibility and most of all the fun.
3. Kirsty and Phil are right, it really is all about…
Location, location, location. Get it right and you will maximise attendance. Ensure you choose a venue within a short walking distance from your office/s or public transport links (think of safety at the end of the night). The Christmas party is a thank you to colleagues, lets’ make it easy for them to celebrate.
4. It’s good to talk
Do your research, find out what went well (and not so well) last year. Speak with colleagues and get honest feedback. This will ensure the same decisions aren’t made this year. Whether colleagues have decided they want something more wow this year, a venue with a theme or something more relaxed. This will really help you narrow down your venue search and help you find the perfect venue for your Christmas party.
5. Date for the diary
Finding the right party date for your colleagues is critical in order to achieve optimum attendance. Ask colleagues in person, use Survey Monkey or Doodle to get the anonymous results. We find that the last week of November and the first two weeks of December are most popular (negotiate a good deal on not so popular dates).
6. Food glorious food!
The food is one of the most talked about elements of the Christmas party without doubt. We advise you not to cut corners here. You don’t necessarily need to go for a traditional three course Christmas dinner, one of my favourite options is food stalls because of the interaction with guests and the chef, you also get to chat with a wider group of colleagues rather than being static at a table.
7. Tantalise those taste buds
A menu tasting will reduce your stress levels on the night, you will know how the food will be presented, what each dish tastes like and please remember to sample the vegetarian options. A tasting also gives you the opportunity to sample the wine included in your package and sample the wine upgrades. Check out photos from our client Christmas tastings on Instagram.
8. Do not send a DIARY NOTE
That’s right; send an invitation. Make it personal, make it an occasion, set the tone and start the excitement. Remember to include the essential details; full venue postal address, timings, date, dress code (especially if your party is themed) and RSVP to whom and by when, you may want to distribute the menu at a later stage. You could then link the invitation to colleagues Outlook calendars if you wish.
9. Mr & Mrs Fussy Pants
Bear in mind venues typically offer a one choice menu, so one starter, one main and one dessert for all guests; this means service is slick and quick. However, we understand that this may not work for everyone (especially if your CEO has an acquired pallet!), we can give you the option of a choice menu (supplements apply), we just ask that a table plan and menu place cards (with colour codes on) are used to aid a seamless service.
10. I like to move it, move it…
Music and entertainment make a Christmas party. Our packages include a DJ so you don’t need to worry about playlists, quality of equipment or an empty dance floor. We partner with award winning Mighty Fine Entertainment – tick.
11. Say cheese!
The Christmas party should be a celebration, take lots of photos and create an internal party album to circulate the next day, it may encourage colleagues who missed out to join next year. We have some really fun photobooth options this year or you could opt for a professional photographer.
12. Are you and your colleagues ‘out out’?!
If the answer is yes, then confirm what time your chosen venue has a licence until. Most of our venues a late licence can be requested until 1am, the bar then stays open until 12.30am.
Pre-book taxis and agree rates, if your party falls on a key date, finding a taxi in London to get colleagues home safely could be impossible and not the lasting memory anyone wants after a great party.
Talk to Amelia about Christmas party venues and inspiration on 020 7871 0577