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The annual company party: a present for the staff

You organise the annual company party for your staff. Without these employees, your company would not be what it is. That’s why many company directors organise staff parties as a way of showing their appreciation for all the good work that the personnel contributes day in and day out. At the same time, it’s also a great opportunity for coworkers to get to know each other in a different way.

Original formula

The days are long gone when employees would consider the annual staff party a boring obligation. That’s thanks to the wide range of original approaches that the events sector has begun offering in recent years. While companies used to offer an evening-long traditional dinner or a day at the zoo to coworkers and their families, the range has become a lot more varied now. You can choose from original theme parties such as a James Bond evening, a Roman feast night featuring successful performers. You can also take exciting Citygame-excursions or attend all kinds of creative workshops and organised tasting sessions to entertain your staff each year. It’s best to choose a formula that is most appropriate for your company and your staff.

Company party on a budget

However, not everything is rosy in the world of events. Since the economic crisis in 2008 many companies have been introducing extensive cost-cutting measures. Holding a staff party is one of the first things to be cut. In the meantime, it’s been two years and people are once again starting to dare to organise a bit more, but company directors still remain cautious.

Company parties or excursions don’t have to be overly expensive. In order to keep the budget under control, people often choose the following options:

  • Whereas in the past a full evening party with deluxe four-course meal was often provided, people now tend to opt for an afternoon activity accompanied by a barbecue.
  • This activity can be focused on what the employees make of it. All kinds of teambuilding activities are often good alternatives.
  • You can organise a large-scale event for a small, select group and a simple event for a larger group.
  • Working around an existing event, such as attending a concert, rather than trying to create your own is often seen as a cheaper alternative

Company party à la carte

Company parties can be custom-created according to all kinds of formulas: parties with a sports or adventure aspect, parties that are full of entertainment and do full justice to term ‘party’ or cruises, citytours, workshops that you can learn something from. Anything is possible, it’s up to you.

Another trend is that in line with socially responsible enterprise, people also want to organise socially responsible company parties such as an eco-dinner, a sustainable visit to a farm or even building your own windmills.

Organising tips

No matter what, organising a staff party remains a big job. Here are some useful tips:

- Choose the date well enough in advance. Or use the same date each year.

- Involve your staff in organising the event. That increases the chances that the formula will be appreciated.

- Discuss their expectations with them.

- Find the right location.

  • Does the location have the right atmosphere for the event, for the target group and the theme? Try to find the most unique place possible.
  • Is the location large enough?
  • Is there enough parking?
  • Is the location easily accessible for the guests?
  • Are the technical and sanitary facilities sufficient for your event?

- Is there a house caterer connected to the location you have chosen or will you provide your own?

Draw up a complete and thorough budget and always provide an extra 10% for unplanned expenses.