The most wonderful time of the year is upon us again. With only a few weeks to go before Christmas, professionals face again the colossal task of organizing the company Christmas party. While this may be huge and demanding, it’s also exciting. For sure, you look forward to coming up with a fun theme, scouting talents for entertainment, and taste-testing the menu.

Even doing oculars on different venue options is a great experience, especially because we’re not limited anymore to the typical hotels in the metro. Condos, with their modern, stylish venue rentals, such as the ones offered by DMCI Homes, make a good candidate for hosting the most epic, memorable office holiday party.

If you’re assigned to the organizing committee, take the event planning one step at a time, especially the huge task of doing oculars on different venues and DMCI Homes properties. Use this guide to pull off a fun and memorable company Christmas party.

Why do we have company Christmas parties?

Before we dive into the actual event organizing tips and office Christmas party ideas, let’s backtrack a bit and think about the reason you’re mounting this event in the first place. Believe it or not, your “why” will largely influence the activities and help you be more purposeful in planning the celebration.

For most organizations, company Christmas parties go beyond taking part in the yuletide cheer — it improves the corporate environment. Here are some of the reasons companies invest in great holiday celebrations:

  • To show gratitude: Since company Christmas parties are year-end occasions, many organizations take the opportunity to express appreciation to hardworking, loyal employees. Taking note of this, you should dedicate a time in the event to acknowledge your best team members.
  • To build camaraderie: Festive holiday parties are a great way to have employees bond and form relationships beyond being workmates. Design your event in a way that would help team members know each other more.
  • To break barriers: Since Christmas parties are company-wide events, it’s a chance for employees from different departments to mingle. Include in your program networking opportunities for members of different teams.
  • To boost company morale: Year-end celebrations provide the opportunity for sharing your company’s success and milestones for that year and the plans for the upcoming year. Sharing these will give your workforce renewed excitement in getting the job done.
  • To improve your company culture: This is possible as you reflect the values of gratitude, camaraderie, inclusivity, and growth in your Christmas party activities.


How to plan the party

As you bear in mind the reasons for organizing company Christmas parties, plan your activities and start organizing. Follow these important event tips so you can pull off this event like a pro:

Identify roles and delegate

Involve your colleagues to share the workload and responsibilities for your company Christmas party. First off, identify all the roles needed and then gather the most qualified people. Create a committee to cover all aspects of events planning: program, games and prizes, food, styling, coverage, etc.

Getting a committee or team members from different departments would also mean better representation. The group does not have to be a large team, but make sure that the members are empowered to make decisions.

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It would also help if you can create a chat group where all relevant updates can be posted and where team members may comment or suggest so that you are all on the same page.

Start with the two W’s: where and when?

Two things that need to be addressed and agreed upon as soon as possible are the date and the venue.

With only a few days left until December, expect those party venues to be filling up with bookings and reservations. Act quickly and scour all possible venues from hotel ballrooms and restaurants to events places. Decide based on the expected number of people, size, proximity, and theme. It should be strategically located and flexible enough for your needs.

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Next, pick the perfect date and time. Make sure the party does not coincide with other company events so as not to divide attention. Also, consider having it on off-peak days. Company Christmas parties in Manila are often celebrated on Friday nights or weekends, but if you want to save everyone from traffic and hassle, consider having it on a weekday or perhaps ahead of everyone else like the first week of December.

Budget appropriately

The first step in setting a proper budget is to estimate your guest count. The number of employees attending the event will determine the size of your venue and the food and alcohol you’re providing — the top three biggest party expenses.

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Once you determine the guest count, get quotes from different venues and catering suppliers. Compare them side by side and see which ones fit into the allocated budget for your event. Check out our ultimate party planning guide when on a budget.

Choose a unique party theme

Coming up with Christmas party themes is usually the one that stirs disagreements, so tread on this carefully. Bear in mind the budget, access, preference, and company culture. If you have time, roll out a quick survey just so you are sure that the top choice wins and everyone’s voice is heard.

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Unique corporate holiday party ideas are usually centered on themes. Formal, time periods or decades, and masquerade are the usual choices. If you want to go for a more unique and creative theme, you can explore the following: ugly Christmas sweaters, Christmas around the world, holiday movies and characters, Great Gatsby/Roaring 1920s fashion, and rock’n roll. If you need party place ideas that can match your theme, here are our top event venues for celebrations.

Plan activities to go with your party theme

The benefit of having a Christmas party theme is it makes brainstorming activities a lot easier. It will actually guide and filter the things you want to include in the program.

Let’s say your theme is ugly Christmas sweaters. One fun activity you can try is a fashion show of all the top-voted ugly sweaters, having employees model their outfits with confidence. The ones who have the best catwalk wins a prize at the end of the company Christmas party.

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Other activities you can try are teams decorating their own ugly sweaters and an open mic session with employees singing their favorite Christmas songs in their cute outfits. Here are some more fun holiday party ideas to include in your program.

Mind the menu

Make sure that the food is not only tasty, but also inclusive. The holiday menu shouldn’t be all meat and sweets, given that the attendees will have different dietary preferences and requirements. Since keto diet is a trend these days, perhaps there could be ketogenic meals, too. Your menu should also reinforce your theme.

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Most company parties offer buffets, but plated meals are more cost-effective. It can be presented more elegantly, and save everyone from long lines at the buffet table.

Set alcohol limits

Setting alcohol consumption levels is an important consideration for your next company Christmas party. You can’t risk having a drunk employee ruin the night or have employees too intoxicated to network and enjoy the party, much less drive their car home.

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Apart from safety concerns, this company party idea is cost-effective. Narrowing your booze selection, closing the bar and happy hour early, and offering drinks only during the meal, will reduce costs and keep intoxication levels down.

Source the equipment

Make a checklist of the equipment you need and check if your existing suppliers can provide them. For example, ask the venue administrator if lights and sounds are covered in their package. Can your caterer take care of the styling, too? Are projectors, stage, and backdrop provided or do you need to procure or rent them separately?

With these considerations, you’ll be able to manage expenses better and stay on top of the equipment rental needs.

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Keep the program short and sweet

The company Christmas party program must be short and sweet to give more time for mingling, dancing, and exchanging pleasantries. For this reason, be more intentional in choosing and filtering activities.

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Decide what you need to accomplish before dinner, and what you can do while people are eating. For example, you might want to show a video presentation of the year’s achievements as a way to appreciate everyone’s effort. Do a raffle while eating or every 20 minutes during the whole program to entertain participants.

Organize shuttle service

As the planner, you have to make sure that your guests arrive and leave safely. One of the main concerns of people attending company Christmas parties is how they’ll get there. Remember, not everyone has a car or can afford a taxi.

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This is why it is imperative that you include organizing transport services in your Christmas party planner. If your company has shuttle services, great. If not, arrange for a carpool, contact taxi companies, or hire vans or coasters.

Book fun entertainment

What’s a party without entertainment? Most company Christmas parties in Manila book bands or local artists to their event, but if that would mean going off the budget, a good alternative is hiring a local DJ or a stand-up comedian. Another option is to make a nice music playlist that matches your theme.

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To bring out more fun in the Christmas party program, have each of the departments in your company prepare presentations. Get a great host or emcee who will set the tone of your event.

Document the fun

This is often neglected, but a great company Christmas party needs to be documented. Hire a professional photographer and videographer for the event and give your co-workers something to remember. Set up a photo booth so guests can take something home from the party. Post these photos on your company website to attract more clients and new employees.

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Make time for speeches and thank yous

As mentioned, the company Christmas party is an opportunity for top executives to show their gratitude to employees. Thus, include speeches from business leaders in your holiday party plan. If possible, let them give physical awards to top performers. With this, employees will really feel honored and acknowledged for their hard work.

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Publish eye-catching invitations internally

The invitations are not only intended for making sure that all employees know the details of the upcoming company Christmas party. It’s also to stir up excitement among colleagues.

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When creating your invitations, give people something to look forward to. Perhaps include a teaser of the exciting raffle prizes or the kinds of presentations of each department. Make attendees excited for your party.

Don’t forget gift giving

The yuletide season is a time of giving, so don’t leave out this tradition in your company Christmas party. Even for big companies, this is possible since you can always break into smaller groups or have the gift giving within respective departments and teams. Just be clear about the minimum price for the gifts so employees are well guided when they shop.

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Where to host your company Christmas parties

A company Christmas party to remember

Your company holiday celebration this year should leave a lasting, positive impression on your employees. Remember, this is an opportunity to show gratitude, build camaraderie, break barriers, and boost company morale. Let these goals inspire your plans for the fun festivity.

Key takeaways

Planning the office Christmas party can be your biggest task yet, so don’t blow it by not preparing enough. This is an important event that signifies unity and friendship within the company and among its employees, so plan it with your heart. As you prepare, here are some action steps to take:

  • Plan as early as you can. Remember, you have a lot of event aspects to cover and you want to score the perfect venue for your theme. Act fast.
  • Create a Gantt chart to track the progress of event preparations. This way, it’s easier to spot which tasks are lagging behind and make the necessary adjustments.
  • Stick to your budget. The last thing you need in the middle of the busyness of event organizing is money problems. As much as possible, don’t go over the allotted resources for specific items.

When done right, an office Christmas party is an enjoyable, memorable experience for employees, something they’ll fondly remember. Give the wonderful gift of a beautiful event this holiday season. For more tips in organizing events, visit our blog DMCI Leasing.

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