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How to Plan an Office Christmas Party for Your Company - 5 Tips

Party entertainment advice

Party entertainment advice

Our tips for putting on an office Christmas party your employees will remember for the right reasons – from booking the venue, to arranging the catering and choosing the entertainment.

How to Plan an Office Christmas Party for Your Company - 5 Tips

Hire a great venue

Try to book your venue early, so that you can get somewhere you like – or, alternatively (and with a bit more risk), leave it until the last minute and get a bargain.

Think about how your guests are going to arrive and get home – for example, a country house might look like a beautiful venue for your office bash, but if it takes your guests a long time to get there from your city office and they have to leave early to get home, it probably isn’t worth hiring!

Think about the size and shape of your venue. You’re going to need enough room for people to move about and get to the bar, but not a space that is so big that people are too thinly spread.

If you're hiring a Christmas party band, consider putting them in the same room as the bar, so that your guests don’t have to miss out on the performance when they go to get drinks.

Make an effort with the food and drink

Find out whether anyone in your office has a special diet well in advance, and make sure you cater for everyone – if you’re having a hog roast, offering vegetarians a measly cheese sandwich isn’t fair!

Many catering companies are great at providing food for special diets, so ask about what your caterers offer for vegetarians and people with nut or wheat allergies, or who eat according to religious principles.

The same applies to people who don’t drink alcohol: rather than just giving them orange juice and water, how about offering them mocktails or smoothies?

How to Plan an Office Christmas Party for Your Company - 5 Tips

Make sure you keep everyone entertained

Providing free drinks and sticking a bit of music on probably isn’t enough to make a great party: it’s lazy, and suggests that you don’t value your staff.

They’ll respond by either hoovering up the free food and drink as quickly as they can before heading somewhere else, or having one drink to be polite – then going home!

Christmas party entertainment can be a great way of thanking your staff for a year of hard work and motivating them for the next year. Booking a live party band will provide a focal point for your event, give your guests something to talk about and get them dancing as well!

You don’t have to hire a band that are loud or expensive; if you’re working with a small venue or sound restrictions, there are many options to choose from, such as acoustic acts and singers with backing tracks.

Get the volume right

Do you want dancing, or do you want people to be able to talk, or both? If you want dancing, you’re going to need to make sure everyone can hear the music.

Check any sound restrictions with your venue, and make sure you tell any musicians you hire about this beforehand. Some venues have a noise limiter, which cuts the power when the volume goes above a certain level.

If you’d like something quieter, make sure you monitor the volume – if people can’t talk easily over the music, ask the musicians to turn it down!

How to Plan an Office Christmas Party for Your Company - 5 Tips

Choose the right kind of music

Bear in mind that people have very different tastes in music – not everyone secretly likes Abba after a few drinks! Okay, we know you already knew that, but how can you deal with it?

Tribute bands can make great entertainment for office parties, but if you’re going to go for this option, make sure you choose something that everyone will enjoy.

You don’t have to have a tribute to a specific artist, such as Elvis, Abba or The Beatles – you can hire a 60s tribute band, a 70s tribute band, or an 80s tribute band. These can be great fun when your staff are mostly from one age group.

For a glamorous and sophisticated office bash, how about choosing a swing band? They make a great accompaniment for cocktail parties or drinks receptions, and can either be your main entertainment or provide background music.

If a whole swing band is beyond your budget, how about hiring a singer with backing tracks? They can be just as good a focal point for your evening’s entertainment as a band, while saving you money that you can spend on better food and drink!

Hiring a jazz band for your office party can also be a good option if you need plenty of variety, or you need the band to play at different times and places during an event. For example, they can provide gentle background music for a drinks reception, then something much louder for dancing later on.

Want more advice on choosing office party entertainment? Get in touch with our experts who can help you create an event to remember – for all the right reasons!

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