If business wasn’t stressful enough, a year-end function demands some extra thought and careful planning. Not only are you celebrating the end of the year, and the achievements that were reached throughout the course of the year, it’s also a time to honour the staff and say ‘thank you’ in the best way possible – by creating an event out of it! By Hayden Myers.
Employees, throughout the world, look forward to an event such as this, as it makes for a great send off and is a fun way to close the business year. It’s a time for bonding with colleagues in a relaxed, celebratory setting and it enforces the ‘positive’ company culture component.
So, what should a company not forget, when planning a year-end function?
We have an in-depth list to ensure that nothing gets left behind, and your employees are left feeling rewarded and ultimately, happy that they contribute to a company that has values and appreciate their staff. With our go-to guide, we’ll have you covered in every way – from the entertainment to the venues and accommodation – you can’t go wrong!
1. Plan, Research and Strategize
Without careful planning, effective research, and efficient strategy, your year-end function could go very wrong (and we want to avoid that word as far as possible!). They key is to start planning at least six months in advance, researching possible events companies that could assist, finding special venues and figuring out what your staff would enjoy most. Once these factors are determined, you may have a better idea of the costs involved, and highlight what can and can’t be done. Planning effectively will ensure that your event doesn’t look like it was thrown together at the last minute, will appear professional, and will hopefully ensure that it’s a massive success!
2. Think About the Finer Details
The finer details will include; the theme of the event, the decorations, the menu, the tables, chairs and perhaps even the performances or the DJ. You, see, there’s so much to think of! But it all becomes a lot clearer when you plan, research and strategize – so pay extra attention to number tip #1! Deciding on each of the above points will determine the energy of the event, and since it’s a celebration, it would help to go with themes, music and performances that get people excited, and ready to let their hair down!
3. Venue Options
Deciding on a venue is one of the most critical components of the event. Usually, companies will look for places a little further out from their office location. This adds an element of excitement and surprise because it’s somewhere different, and was most likely not thought of by your employees. A great venue makes the event that much more spectacular. Think of a place that is visually striking, hidden in a beautiful surrounding, such as the wine valley of Stellenbosch or, for something a little more unusual, opt for a seaside village venue with beach access, a harbour cruise, a ocean liner day trip, or a private game reserve in the Eastern Cape. Or if you’re a Johannesburg based company, you may want to opt for a beautiful venue on the Vaal River. Don’t fret over the fact that it may be far out, as there are amazing accommodation options nestled in these fantastic locations, and elsewhere. From hotels and guest houses to lodges and incredible homely villas, South Africa’s got them all!
Although you would’ve briefly considered the entertainment while thinking of the finer details, this is the time to consciously pick out the exact activity, making sure to consider the different types of people that will be present; people with different likes, dislikes, beliefs and tastes regarding entertainment. It’s tricky to please everyone, and you most likely won’t, but the key is to go with what the majority would enjoy. Most people enjoy good music, perhaps even some form of performing arts, or even a motivational talk from a recognised businessman or celebrity. Whatever you decide, having it tie in with the theme, will achieve a good flow for the evening.
The giving of gifts is not essential, but it sure will make the night that much more amazing. Everyone loves a great gift, and it doesn’t have to be something too pricey. A simple gesture such as giving pens, or even better, cultural beadwork gifts that support local crafters, will add that cherry on top while ensuring you don’t break the bank! However, you may want to take a different approach, and have your employees buy gifts for each other. This will further encourage people to chat, and bond with one another.
We wish you success with your year-end function and hope that these tips will help you to achieve that success.