How To Plan The Perfect Office Holiday Party [2017 GIPHY Version]

So, you need tips on how to plan the perfect office holiday party this year, huh?

No worries, I got you!

Hosting holiday parties can be stressful, especially when you want it to be a successful one.

Because as the planner, we fear our coworkers ending up like:


Nope! Not today, Joe, not at the party I’m planning!

So let me go through the needs and wants for an office holiday party.

Note: Budget wisely.


Firstly, you need to have entertainment.


Music helps bring the inner holiday cheermeister out of your coworkers.

Whether it’s live music or a DJ, there has to be some form of sound playing in the background.

Could you imagine an awkward conversation turning silent, how do you find a way out without being rude? Where’s the music to dance or bop your head as you turn away from the conversation? Where’s Steve busting moves on the dance floor to help you laugh your way towards the dance floor?

Aside from saving coworkers from awkward conversations, music also helps with the ambiance.

Determine the music you want to play very wisely. I mean this because it’ll set the tone for the rest of the night, just saying.

If you have hip-hop or R&B, prepare for the night to get pretty wild!

Don’t be surprised to see Barbara hit the dancefloor first, but she’s cool because she’ll bring along all her lady coworkers too.


So that settles on our hip-hop and R&B music.

I’ve been to an office holiday party where they played alternative rock in the background.

Right away, I knew that dancing would not be associated with the party, BUT, it was still going to be fun.

Plus, every time I had to get out of an awkward conversation, I’d turn to a coworker, particularly named Patricia, to save me and I’d say, “Oh my goodness Patricia, The Lumineers? I LOVE this song!”

By the end of the night, someone will be dancing to alternative rock. It may not look in sync or in rhythm, but you’ll feel pretty proud there’s at least one person dancing.


You bet music helps.

But lastly, the formal holiday music.

This sets the tone for a PG-rated environment. I mean, no one wants to see Joe and Barbara grinding.

You may want to entertain your guests with games, slideshows, or other alternatives if this is what your party’s music selection will be.

I’m just saying…holiday music will not hype up your guests, especially if they’ve been hearing holiday music since the first week of November.

You may also see Mr./Mrs. Grinch attempting to change the song, but that’s only because they want to see the party turn up.


But you’ve prepared for mishaps as you were planning the perfect holiday party.

So kindly tell Jane to sit down and enjoy the karaoke session and chocolate covered strawberries.

Secondly, you’ll need food & drinks:

I guarantee you will get people to go with the announcement of food and drinks.

This is the first thing you need to announce on the invitation.

“Food & Drinks will be provided” or “There will be food & drinks” or “Open Bar – Food & Drinks”. The latter will definitely have your whole company attending.

There should be no question as to why food is a need.

But to help clarify, you do not want people going hungry or thirsty. They’ll leave and go to the nearest Olive Garden.


So what kind of food?

Pizza, chicken wings, pasta, salad, cookies, burgers, sandwiches, hotdogs are just a few favorites.

It doesn’t matter which of these you have, as long as you have a sufficient amount.

So know how many people are actually going to go the party.

Are you sending invites with an RSVP section? If not, you should!

The same goes with drinks, will there be enough for everyone, or will you go open bar? Will there be alcohol or not?

Having an open bar will help because you don’t have to worry about any drinks. The bartender will serve water, soda, beer, or mixed drinks.

Makes your life easier.

Although, remember to also put a note on the invite “Drink Responsibly”. You don’t want coworkers to turn out like this guy:


Lastly, location and transportation

Will it be at the office, restaurant, bar, park, or venue?

Each place will gain a new reputable story, so change it up if the location becomes dull year-after-year.

“Remember that one holiday party at _______?” Is a great conversation starter.

Office holiday parties are fun if you can make it not look like work.


Although, it’s a bit like the walk of shame if your coworkers get out of hand and have to walk back into the same location at 8am the next day.

There’s no generic rule if you choose to have a party at a restaurant, bar, park, or venue.

Each location creates its own story, and the following year will help you decide if last year’s location was legendary or embarrassing.

But in addition, you need to figure out transportation, especially if you have alcohol!


If they brought their car to the office, ask responsible coworkers to drive them home. You could also create a list of “emergency numbers” to call their mom, brother, husband, girlfriend to pick them up.

If you have the party elsewhere, you should definitely help by arranging carpools or ubers.

Think of the safety of Barbara and John, even if John accidentally eats the wrong lunch in the refrigerator sometimes.



I mean how could you not want one of these at your office holiday party?

These booths are so popular with everyone, because you can take a small memory of the most rad party ever back to the office or home!


It’ll definitely be a thumbs up from many of your coworkers!

If you don’t want to hire a photographer, this will help get people in for a group picture, or solo, I mean who’s judging? It’s a holiday party!


This is a must-want! Especially since many of your coworkers have talents that you probably never knew about.

Once Jane and Sam go up to sing a duo, everyone will realize how they will need to start a band asap, but then forget about it the next day.


Karaoke brings everyone together by having coworkers sing together, or separately.

Usually, the ones that go alone know they have a beautiful voice, so be prepared to hear Andrea Bocelli or Celine Dion at your office party.

By the end of the night, everyone will want to sing their favorite song.

Ear-worthy or not, it’ll be fun to watch and hear!


So here at AnyPromo, many of us are already thinking about what we should have on our slideshow.

Well, here’s one picture.

A few of us had gone to Knott’s Berry Farm and let me just add how unflattering I look. I was trying to protect my hair and decided to use my sweater as a shield.  Although, my coworkers look great to make this picture 10x better!


At least my hair came out of the ride fully dry. 😊

Anyways, we’ll all be laughing at this picture, so it’s worth the embarrassment.

Slideshows are fun for remembering great moments to laugh at captured memories.

The laughs and claps will be worth it in the end of the slideshow. Just make sure you don’t make it too long!

Attention span is decreasing, so let’s say 5 minutes at the most.

Employee Gifts

Show your appreciation towards your employees by giving them a gift for the holidays.

I asked around the AnyPromo office to figure out the top 3 employee favorites.


Our number one tumbler is our 16 oz BPA-Free Plastic Blue Monday Travel Tumbler.


I’m guessing because coffee and tea are really popular to bring to work on an early morning.

Actually, scratch the guessing, I know for a fact!

Our stainless steel tumbler is a perfect item to print your company logo on and give to your employees as a gift.

Personalization always gives away a personal feeling!


The HIGH SIERRA MULTIFUNCTION IMPACT DAYPACK BAG is one of our most hot and affordable backpacks.


It’s obvious why employees would love to have a backpack as a gift, they can use it outside of work!

Whether for hiking or traveling, it’s convenient for them to have.

A custom backpack will also allow them to proudly represent your company name.

So you know Barbara is really going to love one of these for all her backpacking trips.


We would love to see employers give the AMBASSADOR BOUND JOURNALBOOK to their employees.


I love office supplies, so I could see why employees would want journals.

I’m hoping someone can agree with me on this, journals are super handy. I could never have enough journals in my desk. Some of them haven’t even been written in the inside yet.

It’s pretty nice to have one of these with your own company logo though.

I always take my AnyPromo notebook with me all around the office. It’s basically my best friend. It knows me the most and hears me out.

But honestly…

Follow some of these ideas or gifs, and your holiday party will really come out perfect. It’s the most wonderful time of the year to see everyone happy!

Are there a few needs and wants that I missed out? Let me know in the comments below!

Here’s to a Q4 full of Holiday cheer!

View and download our Fall/Winter 2017 Magazine


About Tanya V 75 Articles
Tanya doesn't like to write much about herself, because she's still figuring herself out. Although, if she is to pick a vegetable that describes her it would be an onion. Peel away the layers and she can make you cry...from laughter, that is. Actually maybe she's not an onion, because she smells wonderfully. So yea, she's still figuring herself out. ✌


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