5 Ideas for Workplace Vacation Celebrations During COVID-19
Holiday celebrations in the workplace will undoubtedly be very different this year in most businesses. Many organizations still operate remotely and security concerns remain at the forefront. Getting everyone together for a potluck buffet and a white elephant gift exchange might not be on the agenda this year. However, employers can (and should) find ways to mark this special time of year.
“The past year has taken a toll on every aspect of our lives,” says Scot Chrisman, Founder and CEO of NWT3K. “Everything from the pandemic to politics has increased our stress and reduced our finances, making the holidays bleak. As a business owner, it’s crucial to overcome the miasma and welcome the coming year with an infusion of positivity. “
With a few creative ideas, you can always strengthen team bonds, thank people for their hard work, and inject much-needed fun into the work environment.
Enjoy virtual holiday parties
Use Zoom for more than the Monday morning staff meeting. For example, host a holiday celebration at the workplace with food delivered to customers at local restaurants. (Your company helps them stay open.) Consider asking participants to dress for a change of pace from dreary sweatpants. The festivities for this holiday celebration may include:
- Charades, Pictionary, bingo, multi-player video games.
- A virtual escape room.
- Seasonal crafts (you send the supplies in advance).
- Watch a vacation movie (maybe through a streaming service you subscribe to).
Socialize on Slack (or other chat programs)
You don’t need to host a formal holiday celebration in the workplace to inspire holiday cheer. Instant messaging platforms have been your team’s water cooler substitute for months, so create dedicated channels for vacation chat.
- Host an ugly sweater contest.
- Create a recipe exchange area.
- Post the best vacation deals.
- Share photos of home offices decorated for the holidays and award participation prizes.
Rejoice, Secret Santa lovers. Tradition can stay alive. As Janet Patterson, Vice President of Marketing Communications for Motorway title loans, explains of his company: “Like every year, employees will also receive gifts this year. However, the only difference is that they will send them by courier this time. On the eve of the Christmas holidays, we will send a Zoom meeting link for each department individually and organize the event. Everyone will unwrap their gifts one by one, like every year. We think it’s a very healthy way to keep the holiday spirit alive and to celebrate the happy times together, as one great team.
For managers looking to brighten up the days, send staff members a surprise. From a festive poinsettia (not pets!) To a fruit basket and everything in between, almost anything can be delivered.
“We’re going to send everyone a quarantine care package,” says Jake Hill, CEO of DebtHammer. “This will include a bag of high-quality coffee beans, noise-canceling headphones, a nice cooler weather blanket and a few other odds and ends. All packaged with care after being disinfected. “
Give monetary gifts
The pandemic has had a financial impact on many employers and employees. Traditional year-end raises and bonuses are likely to be rare, but doing what you can to give workers something “more” during the holidays is sure to appreciate them. Write a check. Send a gift card: Anyone can find what they like or need at Amazon, at the grocery store, or at a major retailer.
“We plan to use the funds saved on office rent and other expenses and build them into our corporate donation budget to provide cash bonuses to staff. We believe that the additional liquidity will be particularly welcome this year due to the unusual circumstances in which we all find ourselves, ”said Steve West, Founder of Entrepreneur Nut.
Looking for other ways to fund a holiday gift? Check out the company’s social budget, which probably hasn’t been tapped as much this year.
“We are sending money to everyone to buy themselves and their families something good, because we will not be spending it on lavish parties this year,” says Dmytro Okunyev, founder Chanty. “Our only request is that our employees send us some photos of themselves and their families. We will then put them together in a collage, which we will create and share after the New Year. ”
Whatever you decide to give or how you choose to celebrate, include heartfelt thanks. A handwritten note expressing gratitude for going above and beyond during this unprecedented year or a heartfelt virtual toast focused on staff accomplishments in the face of adversity will boost morale when your team needs it most.
Additional resource: Maintain employee morale by instill pleasure in the office – even remotely.