The perks aren’t everything at work… but for a lot of companies, the summer and winter parties are something everyone looks forward to. Whether it’s a big budget blow-out, or a few drinks and nibbles, it’s a great way to say “we made it this far!” and spur everyone on for the next quarter or two.
This year, any kind of summer social is looking off the cards. Sure, there’s bigger worries at play. But if you, or your team, are mourning the chance to let off some steam, then here’s our alternative ideas:
We’re well in the swing of postponing things - weddings, birthdays, holidays. So this is one more to add to the pile. Or, if you look at it glass-half-full, one more thing to look forward to!
On the bright side, it gives you more time to plan (as everyone knows co-ordinating meals, drinks, travel, and a venue for 10s-100s of people with different dietary requirements, postcodes, and interests is not an easy task!)
Ok, it’s not going to be quite the same time. But there are benefits to a video link summer party: it’s short but sweet, meaning there’s less chance of embarrassing overindulgences; you can use internet connection issues as an excuse, if you’re ready to slope off; there’s no need to dress up, so you can party in your PJs, and it’s a good way to make sure you chat as a team, instead of the normal subdivisions.
You can still theme it too, by introducing a group activity - maybe video karaoke, a cartoon-drawing lesson, cocktail making tutorials… use your imagination!
So a party isn’t happening. Why not think of another way to give everyone a boost instead? Send a gift pack to each of your team, and give them something to get excited about.
Maybe a ‘summer holidays at home’ kit with tasty seasonal treats and a tipple or two? Or perhaps an extra company-wide day off - sounds like less of a treat when you’re stuck at home, but imagine taking a day of leave and not returning to a full inbox? Dream!
If your company is doing ok in the current climate, why not pool the summer and winter party budgets? At the end of the year, we’ll all be keen for a proper celebration - if the situation allows it - so why not throw your very best team social yet?\ \ And if the budget won’t stretch much further, get creative with the theme. Think ‘summer in winter’ with creatively warm-but-winter-averse costumes, barbecue food and Pimms, and a beach holiday-feeling in a city centre venue.
Whatever you end up doing, remember that your team probably needs a little encouragement right now. Things might seem to be easing, but it’s going to be a long and challenging journey - so take a moment to celebrate each other now.
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