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How to Sleigh Your Virtual Holiday Party

November 29, 2021

The days are shorter, the weather is colder and holiday celebrations are on the horizon.

Although we hoped last year’s remote festivities would be a one-time occurrence, many law firms are opting to go virtual again for 2021 holiday parties.

Similar to last year’s holiday scramble, firmwide celebrations remain essential to a positive workplace culture — and they don’t have to be a chore just because they’re virtual.

Here’s what to do to ensure your 2021 holiday gathering is a success:

Think Outside the Box
Nearly two years of remote meetings have left employees burned out on Zoom calls, which means this year’s holiday party will need to engage the firm in a new and exciting way to compensate for the overload of online activities.

It may be tempting to duplicate past virtual events, especially if they went well, but getting creative with this year’s planning will make all the difference.

Vendors have mastered transforming typically in-person experiences into formats compatible with most video platforms. Some of our favorite online options include:

  • Escape rooms
  • Cooking or cocktail classes
  • Scavenger hunts
  • Murder mystery parties
  • Concerts
  • Fan-favorite games such as Family Feud or holiday trivia

Bringing in a vendor and activity will ensure the holiday party feels different than a typical meeting.

Plan Strategically
Avoid the awkward silences, choppy transitions and that person that just won’t mute by strategizing a few key elements:

  • What is the best platform for the activity, number of attendees and tech needs? Some games require the use of a computer and a phone at the same time.
  • How many activities will take place? Coordinate in advance how the transitions and timing will work.
  • How will you encourage team interaction? Consider polling, breakout rooms or whiteboarding.
  • Who will lead the event? Hiring external vendors can bring new life into regular firm events, but it is important to have a firm leader give opening remarks so people know they are in the right place.

Incentivize Participation
Even with all the right preparations to make a holiday party exciting, some firms still struggle with attendance. To optimize participation, consider incentive options that build excitement for attorneys and staff.

  • Enter attendees into a raffle to be awarded at the end of the party
  • Limit the number entered into the raffle to just those who RSVP by a specified date to encourage responsiveness
  • If a game is part of the event, award the winning team with a gift card or firm swag

Finally, remember to take a screenshot of the winners and use it to promote next year’s holiday party, which we all hope will be back in person again.

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