The Summer holidays are a distant memory, and as you glide gently back into the reality of work, it may be time to contemplate the arduous task of organising the company Christmas Party. There’s plenty of time... or is there?
It’s easy to forget that if there’s serious organising to be done, the sooner you start the better. 25 December may seem like 104 days away… but rest assured there will be lots of people who have already started planning their event.
So, as Santa Clause has his team of little helpers, we hope we can be yours and offer a few simple tips that will ensure you can relax and be primed and ready for the leap into the Festive Season.
1. Start Planning - Now!
Create a brief, and set a budget. The budget is crucial when deciding on what sort of Christmas party you want, determining everything from choice of venue, food, booze, right down to entertainment.
2. Set a Date
We all know that Christmas is a busy period and everyone’s diaries get booked fairly quickly. Typically Thursday’s and Friday’s are popular, and you may even wish to consider a January party to kick start the New Year. Whatever you decide, it’s a good idea to send out a ‘save the date’ email so everyone has it in their diaries well in advance. It will also help define numbers early on.
3. Find a Venue
Having created your brief and set the date, you can now get going on finding a suitable venue. Unsurprisingly, good venues get booked up early so the sooner you can provision a selection of suitable venues the better. Always arrange a site visit so you can see the venue first hand, and consider the importance of easy access to public transport if it’s not the plan to provide everyone with accommodation. Once you have the venue secured, you can relax just a little, although there’s still plenty to think about.
4. Decide on a Theme
The theme is the core of your event; where you can start to get creative and have some fun. It can be as simple or complex as you wish it to be. Where possible, it should be carried through all aspects of the event from invites, dress code for the guests, room dressing, table centres, food and drinks menus, and entertainment. Whether you opt for a traditional theme of Winter Wonderland or go for something crazy, make the most of it and create an environment that will wow your guests. And don’t forget to let your guests know if there’s a dress theme.
5. What to Eat & Drink
As food and drink is always the most talked about feature at any event, you’ll need to get this just right. Remember you don’t have to offer traditional turkey and tinsel, there are lots of different food choices – but remember to take your guests dietary requirements into account, and some venues may also ask for you to ask guests to pre-order items. And don’t forget the alcohol – offering a pre-dinner drink is always a nice touch and instead of the usual fizz consider offering festive cocktails, or spiced cider and mulled wine on arrival.
You’ve sent a ‘save the date’ message, so now it’s time to confirm the arrangements. Sending a personal invitation, even by email, is a sure way to make your guests feel special and get them into the party spirit. Be sure to ask them to RSVP and let you know of any special dietary requirements, together with anything else you need to know.
There is an array of entertainment options for you to choose from, and again you’ll need to get it booked early. From photo booths to walkabout entertainment; from DJs to live party bands and anything in between, the entertainment can really make your party swing.
8. Thank You’s
No long business speeches please, you’ve invited your guests to party and it’s guaranteed they won’t be listening – although a senior member of the team may wish to say a few words of thanks. So if that’s the case, check that you have the appropriate technical equipment for them to do so!
9. Santa’s Little Helpers
Remember you don’t have to go it alone… if you’d like to take advantage of Lemoncake’s capable band of Festive helpers and get your Christmas party plans going with a swing, we’d be delighted to hear from you. Call 07721 849173