How to Throw an “Epick” Work Christmas Party

work Christmas party
After a long—and maybe stressful—year it’s nice for coworkers to come together to celebrate the season and all the work they’ve done over the last 12 months. An office Christmas party is a great way to recognize individuals for their accomplishments and spend time together with no work involved.

5 Work Christmas Party Must-Haves

#1: Eat, drink, and be merry!

Whether you choose to go potluck-style or cater, make sure there’s enough food for everyone, especially if the party is open to employees’ families or a plus one. Here at Uptick, getting food catered from Homewood Gourmet at last year’s Christmas party was a no-brainer. We already know their food is delicious, and it’s a great way to let them know we appreciate them. 
You could also get creative by having some kind of food or drink bar. A popcorn bar, an ice cream bar, a waffle bar, a cookie bar with icing to make the toppings stick, and more! You get the idea: the main item and then topping choices to go along with it. For drinks, you can have a hot chocolate bar, a hot cider bar or, you know, a regular bar. If you do choose to have an alcohol bar at your party, it’ll be worth the extra money to hire a bartender as well.
We also had an open bar at last year’s Christmas party. People were in “good spirits” to say the least!

#2: Decorations

You don’t have to go full-on winter wonderland, but a garland here and a miniature Christmas tree there can do a lot to make your regular old conference room or office space merry and bright. Pro tip: Dollar stores are going to be your go-to, so you don’t break the bank here. You could also create a fun photo booth with a festive backdrop and some string lights. Accompany it with some season-welcoming props for photos—signature Santa hat, reindeer antlers, elf ears, snowflakes, etc.—and you’ve got a ho-ho-hilarious good time on your hands. Relevant aside here: This is a staple for almost all major Uptick parties. 
At Uptick, we get into the Christmas spirit probably more than most (but that’s true of almost all our parties). We decorate the office for Christmas—and at least make a morning out of it. Last year, we had a pre-cut tile from an earlier gag that was repurposed so we could actually have our tree put up properly. The tree was too tall for our ceiling otherwise!

#3: Games

You don’t have to reinvent the wheel with this one. Put a fun holiday twist on classics like pin the carrot nose on the snowman, Christmas movie trivia, holiday charades, and, of course, an ugly Christmas sweater contest.
For instance, this year, we’re doing an in-office Secret Santa between co-workers. Last year, we cut up with a rowdy game of Dirty Santa (much to the delight of our resident prankster and fearless VP of Business Development, Jerry Brown).

#4: Entertainment

Is it even a party if there’s no music? If you have the budget, hire a (good) band or a DJ to play everyone’s favorite Christmas songs throughout the night. If it’s not in your budget, have your coworkers be each other’s entertainment and sing their favorite Christmas songs via a karaoke contest.
Another option is hiring a comedian for a portion of the party or a mixologist to show everyone how to make the latest holiday cocktail.
We try to get out of the office for our Uptick Christmas parties and go to local places in and around the Ham. In years past, we’ve attended the Sidewalk Film Festival—and had Christmas movies playing while we spent time together as a team. This year, we’ll be at The Hive, an event space located in downtown Birmingham with food, drinks, and games (!!!).

#5: Gifts/Prizes

Don’t let your partiers leave empty-handed. Let everyone know if you’re going to have a White Elephant Exchange or play Dirty Santa so they can be sure to bring a gift and participate. For Secret Santa this year, we had a team email thread for everyone to “hint” to their Secret Santa what kind of gift they would enjoy. This is a fun way for people to get to know their coworkers better—and helps ensure everyone gets a gift that they will like.
Ugly Christmas sweater contests are also a holiday party staple. After everyone’s arrived and had time to mingle, take a vote on the ugliest sweater. Prizes for the winner(s) could include store or restaurant gift cards, event tickets, or even PTO.
Whatever you choose to have at your holiday party, be sure to show how much you appreciate your coworkers and employees! And, as always, if you have questions about digital marketing, reach out to us; we’d love to hear from you. Happy Holidays from the Uptick Marketing team!