Why are end of year functions important? Is it just an excuse to party or does it serve a purpose? Does it have to be an expensive event, or can it be on a budget?
Why are they important?
- It shows that you recognize your employees hard work;
- It ends the year on a good note and brightens employees’ moods for the last bit of work left for the year;
- It gives employees the chance to connect with each other on an informal level which may help them work better together the following year;
- It gives employees a chance to give new ideas and recommendations
- You create platform for honest feedback and suggestions from the past year to management;
- It is a way to “give back” to employees for their hard work and it shows you care about them as part of the company.
Function ideas for the budget conscious
- Hold the event at the office and use the space available;
- Don’t serve plated meals but rather platters
- Parking lot cookout: If you have a open parking lot, use it. You can have an office braai outside and use tables/ chairs from the office or each employee can bring their own camping chairs;
- If you are looking at hosting the function at a restaurant then there is no need to hire the entire venue, just book a few tables. You can arrange selected options for food and a budget for drinks;
- Get your sister companies or other companies in the building to join in for the end of year function – it can save on fees as well as help employees learn more about each other in the other companies.
What can you do at these events to make them fun?
- Play a few party games to ensure some fun and comradery between employees;
- Have a Secret Santa, you can set a specific price for the gifts to ensure no one needs to spend a lot;
- Have someone with good music bring their speaker and Ipod/Laptop;
- You can have a gender neutral gift exchange – everyone stands in a circle and passes the wrapped gift they brought, music is played and when it stops the gift in your hands is yours (try to ensure that people don’t end up with their own gifts);
- Do a charity event, such as volunteer work. It shows that your company cares about the community;
- Have a movie day. Employees can give movie options and have a poll for which movies to watch at the office with snacks;
- Throw a small theme party to which everyone can contribute, this can also help with teamwork and planning in a fun, stress free environment.