Why you should never cancel your Staff Xmas Party …

Xmas party - red and white group

HAPPY XMAS PARTY SEASON … make it a meaningful event.

Regardless of budget constraints or less-than-optimal situations, you should NEVER CANCEL THE STAFF XMAS PARTY.

If there is one time of the year that staff want to feel appreciated, valued, that they belong to your team, and that your organisation is a ‘good fit’ for their career aspirations …
WHY?  … Because the holiday season is a great time to relax and reflect on your personal achievements.  That means over Xmas and the New Year, your team members will likely be reflecting on their personal work achievements, their workplace culture situation, their career aspirations and goals, whether your organisation is a good fit to achieve those … and reviewing their choices for the future.
So, how important is this to you? … do you want them to return after the holiday break with refreshed enthusiasm and positive motivation?
Great leaders know how important this is … they identify, recognize and ensure their organisation rewards meaningful efforts and achievements … and they love to celebrate with the people involved.
There are lots of ways to celebrate achievements:
  • If it’s been a great year ... go all out, surprize them with your generousity … thank your team and ensure they all feel valued and special. Speak with excitement about what 2016 will bring, and how they fit into that vision.
  • If it’s been an average year … celebrate the year by focusing on both achievements and learnings … throw an in-house staff party and make sure you include everyone. Inspire them with your positive vision and plans for 2016.
  • If it’s been a crap year and money is tight … show appreciation to your team with personal ‘thank-you’ notes, written and delivered by ‘the boss’ with a hand-shake … perhaps include a small gift card. Throw a simple drinks afternoon to send off 2015, closing that page.  Encourage them to see 2016 as a new chapter, a new year of new opportunities, adventure and change.   Let them know that you want them to be part of that.

Holiday breaks often provide time and brain space for creative thinking.  Ask them to think of new ideas [outside the box thinking] over the break … and plan a ‘think-tank’ workshop for everyone to bring their ideas forward, for early in 2016. Let them know that you value their input in making 2016 a much better year for your organisation … set the workshop date and follow through with openness to the ideas put forward.

 One more tip: Don’t leave it to the last minute to throw together a half-hearted, short notice attempt at a Xmas party … that’s almost as bad as not having one at all.
“Oh, by the way we’re having a little get together this Monday night, for those who can make it”, is not a realistic or genuine attempt.
Last minute invites are like: Oh, I guess we better do something or it will look bad … the perception is:  not because we want to, but because we have to” which most of your team will interpret as lame’.
Don’t be scratching your head wondering why only 50% showed up! Their response will mirror your effort or care factor towards them.

So … if you haven’t arranged something yet – DO IT NOW!  Make it a high priority … give it the attention they deserve.

If it’s too late to do it well before Xmas holidays, make sure you start 2016 off with real bang –  a New Year / New Chapter celebration party … and PLAN THAT NOW!

 REMEMBER: If your team members are not your #1 priority, your organisation will not be their #1 option.

 So … Celebrate … Appreciate … Stimulate … Motivate your team … and throw an awesome Xmas party.

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