10 Last Minute Holiday Party Ideas

Managed by Q
November 18, 2019

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and with everything on your to-do list, we’re not surprised if you haven’t had a chance to plan for the upcoming festivities. But there’s still time to jingle all the bells and throw an office holiday party that everyone will want to be a part of. With this collection of effortless holiday party ideas, you’ll send them all into the new year smiling.

‘Tis the season to dress up

Turn up Managed by Q’s holiday party playlist and invite employees and their plus ones to an ugly sweater party for the ages. Make it a contest so that people are more motivated to show up in their fuzziest and gaudiest attire in exchange for a prize (or bragging rights).

Not your style? If you’d prefer to make your holiday party a more formal event, throw a snow white party instead. Ask attendees to wear all white to match the falling snow, then deck the halls with twinkle lights and glitter snowflakes to make the winter evening sparkle.

Sip into the holiday spirit

Whether yours is a wintry event or a spectacularly tacky one, your party won’t be complete without refreshments. Set up a hot chocolate bar in your office to sweeten everyone’s spirits. For a complete hot chocolate bar you will need:

  • Hot chocolate. If you use milk as the base for your hot chocolate, include a dairy-free option as well.
  • Mugs or paper cups
  • Wooden spoons and stir sticks
  • Assorted toppings (whipped cream, marshmallows, toffee, chocolate chips, crushed peppermints, candy canes, chocolate syrup, caramel sauce, Pirouette cookies)
  • Jars and place cards (or labels) for your toppings
  • Optional alcoholic mixers like peppermint schnapps, coffee liqueur, or whipped cream flavored vodka

Capture the cheer

Document all of the holiday fun by renting a photo booth from one of Managed by Q’s events vendors. If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly option, you can create a DIY photo booth. Use tinsel, streamers, or wrapping paper as your backdrop, and provide plenty of props like antlers, elf hats, Santa hats, carrot noses, or white beards. Your guests will love dressing up in these disguises together, and they’ll leave with pictures they can treasure.

Rock around the office

Is that Mariah Carey, or Sarah from Sales? Make your holiday party a hit with some office karaoke featuring festive favorites. Bring out the mics after your happy hour to reign in some enthusiastic volunteers, and soon the whole workplace will be caroling.

Hunt for holiday gifts

This year, let Santa drop into your employees’ Slack before he climbs down their chimneys. Hide treats and trinkets around the office and hold a day-long scavenger hunt, sending regular riddles via Slack message that only the wisest among you will solve. Other scavenger hunt leaders could include: Mrs. Claus, Krampus, Rudolph, the Grinch, Frosty the Snowman, Ebenezer Scrooge, Buddy the Elf, or even the Holiday Armadillo.

Decorate gingerbread offices

Team building activities are a great way to bring your employees together over the holiday season. Break out into groups or departments, then give each team the opportunity to decorate a single gingerbread house that best represents your company. Display the finished gingerbread houses and have a higher up crown their favorite miniature workplace.

Have a merry little competition

Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer? What do the candles on the menorah represent? How many points does a snowflake have? What’s the best selling holiday movie of all time? Stump your employees with these and more questions in a round of holiday themed trivia. Make it inclusive so that anyone can participate, regardless of which holiday they celebrate.

Treat them to a cookie swap

It’s as easy as it sounds! Encourage employees to bake a tray of their favorite homemade holiday cookies and bring them into the office. Put all of the cookie creations together at your holiday party for others to get a taste of different cultures and traditions. Provide boxes so they can take some home to share with their loved ones, too.

Organize a coat drive

The holidays are a time of giving and receiving, but it’s important to remember that not every family will be warm or well fed this winter without help. Organize a coat drive in your office and donate new or gently used coats to a nonprofit organization in your community to help a man, woman, or child in need. It’s cold outside, but they don’t have to be.

Celebrate your employees

End your office holiday party on a jolly note by recognizing employees for all of their hard work and achievements over the past year. You can present them with actual awards, or simply give them a toast to show your appreciation.

Any of these activities will help make your office holiday party a memorable one. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you have everything you need ahead of time with Managed by Q’s Holiday Party Planning Checklist. This might be the most anticipated workplace event of the year, and we’re here to prevent a single tablecloth or centerpiece from being forgotten.


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