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5 Fun Activities For Your Company Holiday Party

5 Fun Activities For Your Company Holiday Party

Written by: Jenni Liu, Sales & Events Coordinator

Mele Kalikimaka from Waikiki! What do you mean, “it’s too early to say Merry Christmas”? Most companies are already planning their holiday parties! Why not start revelling in the Christmas joy now? But planning a company event can seem like hard work: where to start? With the games, of course! What better way to let your employees know it’s a party than with some fun and festive activities! Some important things to keep in mind for a company party is the location and timing. Depending on where you live, an outdoor event wouldn’t be possible in wintertime, so you might be looking for a private venue space or restaurant depending on the size of your company. And the last thing anyone wants is a work event that drags on and on! So what are some party games that won’t eat up a lot of party time, can fit into a smaller indoor venue, and won’t break the bank? Read on for some ideas!

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1. How Many Ornaments

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Everyone loves Christmas decorations! This is a fun and easy way to get your employees involved from the beginning, and will take some brain power as well. Fill a large, clear container with a number of ornaments; the more variety of colors and sizes, the better! Set it out at the entrance on your Check-in Table, and have each attendee write down their best estimate as they arrive. Reveal the correct number during dinner and award the employee with the closest guess.

PRO TIP: Hit up your local thrift store for some oddly-shaped vintage ornaments! The varying shapes and sizes will make the container look more interesting and may confuse even the most meticulous mathematician.

2. Holiday Trivia

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If you have A/V capabilities and a willing emcee, a trivia game is always a fun way to get people in the spirit of the holidays and the spirit of competition! Depending on the size of your company, you can have attendees play as individuals, or split the party into teams. Ask 10-15 questions such as “How many reindeers does Santa have,” “What did my True Love give to me on the Tenth Day of Christmas,” or “What is Scrooge’s first name” and see how many people know the answers! Have the players write down their responses, and then report back how many total correct ones they have (honor system: no cheating!). The player or team with the most correct answers wins!

PRO TIP: Prepare a final “Lightning Round/Battle Royale/Winner Take All” speed round to determine the ultimate winner if you have 2 players who have similar scores, or just to extend the fun!

3. Name That Song

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This is a great way to test the musical knowledge of your attendees! You’ll need a small speaker or a loud cell phone to play this, so make sure the venue allows this. Simply cue up a playlist of popular and obscure holiday songs, play *only* the first 5 seconds, and see who can answer correctly! If you want to make it even harder, make a rule that the song can only be played once: no do-overs! Again, this can be played individually or in teams, depending on your guest count.

PRO TIP: In addition to Naming the Song, you could also do Musical Chairs: Christmas Song Edition! While everyone is familiar with musical chairs, I’ll bet it’s been a while since you played it; don’t be surprised by how competitive (and funny) it can get when played by adults!

4. Employee Bingo

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Do you have a mix of veterans and newer people? Do you have some shy wallflowers who just clock in, clock out, and leave? Are you allowing your attendees to bring a guest who may not know anyone? If so, you can break the ice with some Bingo! No, not the kind with Tutu at the front of the room calling out letters and numbers: this is Employee Bingo! Print bingo cards that have squares that might say “Broke a Bone,” “Vacationed in Italy,” or “Have 3 Kids.” The “Free Space” in the middle could say “Works at [Your Company Name]” for fun! Attendees go around interviewing their fellow party-goers throughout the night and marking off squares; the first person to yell out BINGO! is the winner! Google “People Bingo” for more fun categories and free printable templates.

PRO TIP: Ask your employees to submit their own topics for squares in the weeks leading up to your party to get them involved and excited before the party.

5. White Elephant

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Talk about getting competitive! This game brings out the best and worst in people, and can get pretty lively. Each person who wishes to participate should bring a nondescript, fully wrapped gift. Count out the number of people playing (e.g. 10 participants) and write the numbers 1-10 on little scraps of paper. Toss the papers in a bowl, and have each person blindly pick a number. The numbers represent the order in which they pick gifts. Person 1 picks the first gift and shows the group. Person 2 has the option to pick a new gift, OR they can steal Person 1’s gift! If Person 1’s gift gets stolen, they choose a new gift to unwrap. And so on and so forth. Merriment and chaos ensue! Make sure you leave enough time for this game; depending on the party size, this activity could take a while. If you know some people have to leave earlier than others, start the game during or right after dinner to ensure everyone gets a fair chance.

PRO TIP: Make sure you set ground rules, and go over them at the beginning! Will you allow an item to be stolen more than once? What’s the limit on steals? Is there a dollar minimum or maximum for gifts? And do you want to do Regular Gift White Elephant, or give it a twist like Gag Gift White Elephant or Christmas Ornament White Elephant? It’s up to you! Just make sure everyone knows the expectations.

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These are just a few suggestions that you can tailor to your employees. A holiday party is a way to say Mahalo to your hard working staff, so think of things that THEY would like to do and the best way to keep them entertained. Remember to keep it festive, keep it brief, and keep your fingers crossed that what happens at the holiday party doesn’t end up on social media the next day! We wish you a fabulous Fall season from Honolulu; stay tuned for our next post!