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Tips for Throwing a Great Corporate Party

Tips for Throwing a Great Corporate Party

Businesses and corporations may throw parties for a variety of reasons, from promotions to retirements and from holidays and anniversaries to awards, product launches, and more. Throwing a great corporate party doesn’t need to be overwhelming, however, and with thoughtful planning, any corporate party can be an enjoyable and memorable event.

Defining the Event

Before in-depth party planning begins, it is critical to determine the expectations and parameters of the event. These guidelines will inform what type of party to plan and will help ensure the event is a success. Whether one person is in charge of the party or it will be a committee-planned affair, first decide:

  • What is the party’s purpose? Parties honoring a specific individual, announcing a new merger, or celebrating a casual holiday will have very different planning needs.
  • How many attendees are expected? This detail is critical to form a guest list if needed, or to plan basic details such as seating, menu servings, party favors, venue size, etc.
  • What is the preferred party style? Parties meant to be more casual relaxation and socialization need different planning than formal, more solemn events.
  • Are there any specific requirements? It may be necessary to use specific vendors or a certain venue, or planning for certain items, such as equipment for a guest speaker.
  • What is the overall budget? Knowing how much can be spent can help determine the most economical choices for different party needs, without running into the financial red.

12 Tips for a Great Corporate Party

Once the basic party guidelines are set, planning can truly begin. While the best strategies for planning different parties will change based on those guidelines, there are many tips that can help any corporate party be a great event.

  • Plan Early – The sooner you start planning a corporate party, the more options you will have for available dates and vendors, venue selection, and other arrangements. Early bookings may also help avoid conflicting dates, as well as secure better deals for a budget-friendly party.

  • Delegate If Possible – If others can help with the planning, make the best use of their skills. One individual may have great spatial awareness to create a table layout, for example, while another might be a hobbyist baker who could provide special treats for the event.

  • Hire Help as Needed – Do not unilaterally draft “volunteers” who won’t be able to enjoy the party as fully, but instead hire help where it may be needed. This could be wait staff, bartenders, vehicle valets, a coat check station, musicians, or a clean-up crew.

  • Be Mindful of Weather – Take care to plan for inclement weather and make adjustments in an entryway, tent, or with a completely alternative venue if necessary. Also be aware of the likely temperature for heating or cooling to keep guests comfortable.

  • Rent Effectively – Working with an experienced party rental company can make corporate party planning a breeze. Consider renting tables, chairs, dishes, serving stations, linens, tents, sound equipment, or other party necessities for easy setup and a coordinated event.

  • Make It Meaningful – Personalize the event as much as possible with the guests in mind. This might mean choosing favorite colors for an honoree, or being mindful of different preferences for holiday celebrations for a seasonal party.

  • Pay Attention to the Menu – Whether the party will feature just light refreshments, a full meal service, an open bar, or a dessert buffet, take into account any food preferences, dietary restrictions, or food allergies of attendees to ensure delicious options for everyone.

  • Offer Entertainment – Choosing entertainment for a party can be a challenge, depending on the type of party and other activities planned for the event. Entertainment may be as simple as background music, or could include other performers, a slideshow, or games.

  • Add a Creative Element – Adding one unique, memorable element can make the event pop. This might be a unique lighting fixture as a focal point, an entryway as a photo spot, fun games for a casual party, or a truly striking centerpiece cake for a decadent treat.

  • Create a Party Timeline – If the party will include planned activities, such as an icebreaker, speakers, award presentation, games, dancing, etc., put together a cursory timeline for the party so everything can be accommodated without a rushed feeling.

  • Build Buzz – If the party is one intended to promote the company or entertain clients, be sure to use social media channels, video teasers, email newsletters, and other marketing to build buzz for the event and drive more interest.

  • Be Flexible – Above all, be flexible with corporate party planning. Especially if the event is planned well in advance, expectations, budgets, and needs may change as the date approaches, and it is important to adjust the party as needed to create an enjoyable event.

After the Party

In the days after a corporate party, it is important to reach out to vendors, assistants, and attendees with appropriate thanks for their help or for otherwise being part of the event. This will help build networking connections and promote the business in a positive and gracious way. This is also a great opportunity to follow up on new ideas, such as offering a special deal or promotion for a new product or additional business partnerships, or to get feedback on the event or what the party was focused on, if applicable.

With careful planning, appropriate use of resources, and thoughtful organization, any corporation can have a great party that employees, clients, partners, and guests will enjoy,