The coronavirus pandemic means that most office gatherings for the year will not hold. Team events and get-togethers have also been affected in the same vein.
With the slew of virtual tools at our disposal today, you don’t have to break holiday tradition at all. Covering a broad spectrum of virtual holiday ideas, we have developed some pointers to getting the best out of the current situation.
Things to Do Before Hosting a Virtual Party
Making the party a success is of the utmost importance. While many companies and brands have now perfected the art of hosting a holiday party, this might be the first time many are hosting a virtual one.
Things are not what they used to be. To get the best out of your party, plan these:
- The Guest List – and inform them ahead of the party. It might be virtual, but it is good form to let your guests know well ahead so that they can prepare for the party. The fact that they don’t have to leave their homes to attend the party does not mean they don’t deserve prior notice.
- The Location – There are a series of virtual meeting platforms out there. Since the pandemic broke out, more companies have come up with fantastic video conferencing solutions. Depending on the number of guests and other unique parameters, make sure to choose the best platform before D-day. The chosen venue should also be duly communicated to the guests to get familiar with it.
- Events – in the list below, we have provided a list of things you can do at a virtual party. Note that you can choose to do a single event, and you can also pack multiple events at your party. The latter is what we will suggest, but we will leave you to make the ultimate choice.
The Top Ideas to Explore
Idea #1 – DIY Parties
The idea is to have a party, where each person creates something whether its food or arts and craft.
Chefs are hosting online cooking classes, artists teaching pottery, painting, and other crafts online.The entire team can stream any of these practical activities together and get it done.
To take things a step further, team leaders can provide their teams with all the materials needed for such online classes to make it interactive without additional costs on their part. This can inject a little bit of competitive fun into the whole mix as everyone tries to get it done best on their ends.
Idea #2 – Caroling Karaoke
We hear the same holiday carol songs every year. We love them, but they can get tiring after a small while.
Get into the holiday spirit better by having your teammates sing some of their favorite holiday songs.
Create a youtube playlist, where everyone can add to it. That way everyone can sing and hear different kinds of music during the holidays
You can even make all of their ideas into a holiday CD for the company itself.
Idea #3 – Stream Holiday Movies
Choose several movies and have everyone vote on which is the best holiday movie. Since you all might not be able to go out and watch such a movie together, stream it from the convenience of your homes.
For the day, let your official online platform be for sharing thoughts and opinions about the movie. There will be spoilers for those that are not watching at the same pace as the others, but that only means they have to get into the action fast enough so that they don’t suffer such spoilers in the first place.
Idea #4 – Costume Contest
Many people have not had the chance to dress up for a long time now. Not in office dress, not in outdoor wear, and indeed not in costumes. Help them bring back some sense of normalcy with a costume contest.
Watch how your employees/ colleagues go over the top with some of the most innovative costumes you have ever seen. This idea also helps those that are typically introverted to show off their exciting sides. After all, they are only going virtual with their costumes and don’t have to step out of the home.
To make things more interesting, organize everyone into the remote frame for a virtual photo booth. Services like Zoom and other video conferencing platforms make it way easier to get a company photo booth picture of this kind than you would in person.
Idea #5 – Virtual Wine Tasting
With all that has happened so far in 2020, a drink is not totally out of place.
Check out Wine.com and their virtual wine tasting events. They live streaming the winemakers, wine critics and other pros to you through our series of free virtual wine and spirits tastings. Taste the wine from the comfort of your own home as experts talk you through their tasting notes, winemaking process, favorite pairings and more!
To make it more competitive, have the labels removed. This is the best way to know the real wine connoisseurs in the group.
As a side note, some people do not take wines and other alcoholic substances at all. This might be due to personal preferences, religion, race, or more. Make sure to respect their opinions and find something else that allows them to feel like a part of the team.
Idea #6 – Play Charades
You can split the entire team into even smaller groups and use this charades idea generator to play charades. The idea of going with smaller units is to ensure the players have enough screen space for their charades to get picked up. The best teams can then compete against one another for the overall winner to emerge.
Idea #7 – Remote Desk Decoration
Are the teammates putting as much effort into decorating their home workspaces as they did when they were in physical offices? There is only one way to find out.
Host a competition to see who has the best-decorated desk and see what they come up with on the party date. The winner gets an award which they can show off on their desk at home or office when things get back to normal, and they can come back to work.
Idea #8 – Talent Shows
Who said talent shows could not be virtual? This will even help those employees who are naturally shy to express themselves better.
Virtual talent shows can include singing, performing skits, doing puppet shows, playing card tricks, and more.
Let everyone sign up (preferably on a Google Forms sheet) so that you know the talents on display for the day and can work it into the party better. Trust us when we say you can rarely go wrong with such an idea.
Idea #9 – Scavenger Hunt
When you cannot step out, it doesn’t seem like much fun you can have with a scavenger hunt. That could not be farther from the truth.
Get your party members to find things in their homes that they bring to the party scene for ratings. It could be a scavenger hunt to find the weirdest thing in their home, pick out the most exciting thing in their refrigerator, etc.
This can be an excellent first game to break the ice and get to know everyone better. Once everyone’s skeletons are put in the open this way, the rest of the virtual party is sure to flow more naturally.
Idea #10 – Awards Show
This is not the time to put pressure on the performance of teammates and other employees. Still, you can have virtual awards show that is fun from start to finish.
Think about awards for things such as the worst holiday sweatshirt, the best-dressed employee, most social colleague, and more. You can even make it more competitive by creating an online poll accessible to only the office people.
Every user can be assigned a voter’s tag to ensure no double voting.
Idea #11 – Virtual Comedy Show
A lot of shows are being hosted virtually these days. We are not totally in touch with the concerts since they might not have the same feel as if you were there in person, no matter how much you tried. What can be fun even online, though, are the comedy shows.
You can arrange with a local comedy act or one not even in the region to come to bring out the laughs from you and your teammates. You can make things more interesting by letting the colleagues/ employees participate in the comedy show with their content. You never know who the next rated office comedian is.
Idea #12 – Game Parties
There are a series of virtual games that can be launched and played by teams online.
Besides being a party, this is also a great team-building exercise that keeps everyone together when we are all physically apart. Some of the games in this category are, but not limited to:
Idea #13 – Kindness Quest
Most companies give back to society during holiday times, but how about making your employees a part of the whole process too?
The whole part of giving is that it happens without being forced, lest the giving’s mission is defeated.
To do so, you can identify the charitable organizations that you would usually donate to. Once done, create a series of trivia questions and quests for your team members—each successful completion of answering results in some giving points.
Thus, such donations – to the tune of what their points earn – are made in their names. To make it more interesting, you can suggest that they can also add more to the automatic donation they have secured from completing said tasks.