Corporate Party Checklist 2016: Big & Bold Holiday Party

Christmas & Holiday Party Tips

corporate holiday party checklist

If you’re in charge of overseeing your company’s corporate party, the task can seem like a daunting one. Sometimes, expectations are low: employees haven’t been wowed in the past, and don’t expect to be wowed this year. Other times, though, someone truly rocked it the year before, and you’ve got some seriously large boots to fill.

Whatever scenario you’re facing, being solely responsible for your company’s holiday party success can be intimidating, to say the least!

Even if you’ve got hundreds of guests showing up, a little foresight can go a long way in making the planning process easier and less stressful on you. Here’s our ultimate checklist for creating a rocking corporate party all your teammates will love.

Start early

Know when you should start planning your big corporate holiday party? Yesterday. That should give you an idea of how important early planning is to ensuring a great celebration. It’s never too early — there’s a reason event planners start planning next year’s event the day after that year’s event is over!

Here at PaperDirect, we’ve already started to reach out to venues and it’s only October 25th. We also use Evernote to capture ideas as they pop into our minds.

Create a team

No one should tackle such a massive undertaking alone, so connect with your colleagues about who can handle what. If you know them well, allocate the most sensitive or challenging tasks to those teammates who you know will come through. If you aren’t as familiar with your team’s work ethic, err on the side of caution by only assigning one or two manageable tasks to teach person.

Get clear about your financial freedom

Knowing what your budget is can have a huge impact on how big and bold you can go. It can also help inform what top-dollar items are important, and which ones can get put on the backburner. You’ll need to work with your HR department or whoever handles budgets. Typically, you’ll take a budget to them and they’ll modify or approve. To get a clear budget, factor in things like:

  • Venue
  • Food
  • Alcohol
  • Activity
  • Taxi vouchers
  • Decor
  • Cleanup

Send Invites

Whether you’re sending a simple Evite or stepping up your game with heavy cardstock invitations, you’ll need to amplify the who, what, when, and where to your attendees.

Settle on a theme

Your theme should reflect the time and atmosphere of your event — ie, a party that is expected to be a swag, fancy gala probably shouldn’t have an “ugly sweater contest” theme. Make sure you know what leadership’s expectations are for the classiness (or casualness) of this affair.

Decide what you can do in-house, and what should be outsourced

This can be dependent on budget, but in general, it’s extremely helpful to outsource things like entertainment, food and drink, printing/invitation sending, and other high-volume, high-touch tasks.

Leave enough time to do a “dry run.”

A dry run can illuminate issues early, from traffic jams in the loading and unloading areas to technology snags with the microphone. Run through your party itinerary multiple times before the big day to ensure a smooth operation.

Technology can help keep your seemingly endless to-do list under control, so check out apps such as Pro Party Planner— even Evernote for note and list making — to keep all your plans and thoughts in one central place.

Shop PaperDirect for Christmas invitations, table tents, and more paper products to make your corporate party pop.