Summer is on its way out, the holiday decorations are starting to show up on store shelves, and the venues and entertainment options are booking quickly. Company holiday parties are a great way to get employees in the holiday spirit and have fun before the holiday chaos begins. And what can make your party even more memorable? Unique entertainment.
Entertainment is a necessity when you’re planning a large company party. Sure, open bars, hors d’oeuvres, and DJ’s are great, but why not take your party to the next level with a unique entertainer or interactive experience? After all, any company can throw a party. Let’s make yours stand out. Whether large or small, entertainment is a must for your company shindig.
Here are a few unique entertainment ideas for your company party to get you started:
Entertainment Idea #1: Magicians
Who doesn’t love a magic show? Whether it’s a wandering magician that makes cards appear out of thin air while guests are sipping cocktails, or a full stage act with birds flying out of a hat, even the most skeptical of guests will get a little joy out of a magician.
Entertainment Idea #2: Live Music
A musical act is always a hit. Of course you’ll want to make sure that the genre is appropriate for the event, but cover bands always do well with audiences… especially if they include a set list of songs from a variety of decades. If you want to do something a bit more unique, try a string quartet or a jazz band.
Entertainment Idea #3: Stand-up Comedians
Comedy is one of the best ice breakers. Booking a comedian can really loosen up the party’s vibe, get people laughing, and make the experience memorable. A word of caution: Make sure the content is “appropriate” for your event.
Entertainment Idea #4: Interactive Activities
It might be a good idea to start your party planning with the activity if you want to make it interactive. Bring your group together for a learning experience, competition, or just some good old-fashioned team building. You could even try a cooking class – which would also cover your catering costs! You could also consider an escape room, which may test the patience of your team, but makes for a memorable time.
Entertainment Idea #5: Trivia
Trivia is becoming trendy again. For the 21+ crowd, bar trivia has become a weekly activity. So why not bring the fun to your party? If you’re feeling creative, go ahead and put your own questions together, find some on Google, or have members of the team submit ideas. Or, you can invite a trivia company to bring their questions, equipment, and rules to make everything run smoothly.
Entertainment Idea #6: Roast
Do you have a boss or a coworker you’d love to make fun of in front of everyone? Come on… sure you do! Roasts are becoming more and more popular as party entertainment. Cater the amount of people in your roast to the size of your party — you don’t want to be a 50,000 person company and roast one person. And make sure the roast-ee is cool with it. Choose to keep the roasts anonymous or allow people to read their own submissions. Just keep it “PG.” And remember, it’s all in good fun.
Entertainment Idea #7: Themed Party Sections
If you’ve got a budget and some space, consider creating different experiences in different areas of the event space. Match your decorations, food and drinks, and entertainment to that theme. Create a Las Vegas-themed space with table games, a cabaret show, and specialty cocktails. Create a Country/Western-themed space with domestic beers, traditional American fare, and square dancing lessons. The options are endless!
When choosing your entertainment for your party, you’ll want to make a few considerations to make sure you’re not missing the mark:
- Check with the venue. If you book a musical act but there isn’t a large enough stage or a sound system, it’s not going to work out in your favor and you might end up spending a lot more than you anticipated.
- Consider the size of your guest list. If you’re planning a more interactive entertainment experience, you’ll want to make sure there is enough space/supplies to go around.
- Keep it mildly professional. Remember, this is for work. So while you want to make sure your guests have a great time, you’ll want to keep your entertainment audience appropriate.
- If possible, read reviews or get recommendations. The worst thing that could happen when booking entertainment is losing them at the last minute. It’s best to book a reputable company or act, always.
Holiday planning doesn’t need to be stressful. By following these tips, using our party planning tools, and getting started early, you’ll be able to pull off an incredible experience for your company that sends them into the new year with plenty of memorable experiences.
Kadi McDonald is a freelance writer, marketing strategist, and proud Cleveland sports fan.