You don’t need to wait until Christmas to celebrate your employees’ hard work. A summer office party can be a great way to keep team morale and productivity levels high all year round. After spending the last few weeks working in a hot, stuffy office, your employees will also be grateful for the opportunity to really relax and cool down.
However, much like most office events, organising a summer party perfectly tailored to everyone’s tastes can be challenging. From big decisions such as the venue to the small details like the food, there’s a lot of details to consider, which can become overwhelming. Luckily, there are a few tips that can help you navigate these treasures waters.
Be our guest
The first thing you need to consider is the purpose of the event. Is it a networking event for employees to build relationships with clients or an employee only celebration as a way of raising team morale? Deciding this will help you refine your guest list and establish the size of the event.
Balance the budget
Before you can start booking anything, a budget needs to be put in place. This is dependent on the scale and tone of the event. Will it be cheap and cheerful or a grand affair? Summer parties tend to have a more relaxed feel however, this doesn’t mean you should compromise on the quality. For example, buffet style catering would be a cheaper option compared to a formal, sit down meal but is still equally delicious.
It’s a date
The date and time of the event needs to be carefully considered. If it’s planned for a weekend date you may risk fewer guests attending as people are more likely to be busy. Employees are also often reluctant to attend corporate at the best of times as they feel pressured to engage with colleagues about work outside of working hours.
For this reason, it’s best to plan the event for a weekday afternoon if work schedules allow. A Friday for example may be the best day as it will show your appreciation for employees’ hard work by giving them an afternoon out of the office, but it will also avoid the issue of them having sore heads in the office the next day.
Setting the scene
Your employees won’t be able to completely relax if the party is at the office. So it can be worth spending the money on an external venue whether it’s a local bar or nice event suite if the budget allows. Remember, it’s important the party is in an area close to the office because you know it’s a mutual location for employees to get to.
Now the weather is heating up, you could also consider adding an outdoors element to the party, it is summer after all. For example, Rivenhall Oaks has an outside terrace where guests can enjoy refreshments in the sun, but still have the inside option so the temperamental British weather won’t ruin the event.
Let me entertain you
Summer events have a lot of flexibility when it comes to entertainment; it doesn’t just need to be a band or live DJ. You can utilise this as a team building opportunity by incorporating games and challenges. For example, a staff Olympic games can be fun and provides healthy competition whilst saving the budget for other areas of the event.
Much like any event, the food and drink are key elements. Firstly, it’s important that enough food is provided because you don’t want hangry guests. Consider if you want a full spread of seasonal staples or smaller canapés for your employees to snack on. A BBQ can also give the event a great summer touch, for example Rivenhall Oaks grill the food outside on the terrace, looking over the golf course.
Finally, saving the best until last, cocktails. Summer is the best time to experiment with drink options at an event. Guests will appreciate refreshing beverages, such as mixed fruit juices, sweet cocktails or perhaps a gin with an elderflower tonic. Many venues offer a whole range of seasonal options on their drinks menu.