Inspirational ideas for making your company summer party deliver genuine impact
Summer’s well and truly here. This year, the weather’s magnificent, making it the perfect time to host a corporate summer event that really delivers. Forget about an employee family picnic or buffet. Now’s the time to plan an event that really shows your workforce just how important they are. What’s more, it takes surprisingly little planning to put on an event that has genuine meaning for your team and inspires them to greater heights in the months to come.
So, if you want to put on an event that’s a little different, an event that enables you to connect on a deeper level with your staff, an event that tells your team how much you value them and motivates them to achieve even more, read on. We’ve put together a guide on how to organise a corporate summer event everyone will love.
What’s your budget?
First you need to determine how much money you can spend. Don’t worry if there isn’t much money in the kitty – with a little bit of thoughtful creativity, you can make a little go a long way. But it’s pointless dreaming of an elaborate affair with celebrity guests and dove releases if you haven’t got the budget.
What’s your goal?
Think about what you want to achieve with your summer event. The goal will shape the type of event you arrange. Do you want to reward your employees for their hard work or promote better teamwork? The purpose of your event will determine the type of activities you choose to arrange.
Is this an employee-only event or are families welcome too? This will very much depend on what you decided your goal is. You’ll also need to know how many people are likely to come so that you can book a venue that can accommodate everyone.
When are you going to hold your event?
Are you giving everyone time off work to go to the event or will it be an evening or weekend party? If your corporate event is aimed at a single department or two, it might be fine to arrange your party during business hours, but if the entire company is invited, it’s probably best to hold it out of hours.
Who’s organising the event?
Perhaps you like the idea of arranging the event yourself, keeping the details a surprise for your team. However, we’d recommend putting together a small committee to plan the party. That way, you can get your employees’ perspective. Not only does this mean your event has the greatest chance of success, it makes your staff feel empowered and that their opinions matter. If you want to promote closer teams through your event, when you appoint a committee, this process can start long before the big event.
Now we’ve covered the organisation of a summer party, it’s time to look at the event itself. These days, there are so many choices available to companies looking to host a summer outing with meaning. Remember, this isn’t just a chance for your team to have fun and build closer ties; this is also an opportunity to reinforce your company mission and brand.
Some of our favourite themes for corporate summer events include:
Corporate summer outings have come a long way. Today, offices do everything from sponsoring a volunteer day to attending sporting events, to participating in competitive cook-offs, laser tag and go-cart races. While the purpose is often to build camaraderie and reward employees for their hard work, corporate events also provide an opportunity to reinforce your company mission and brand.
Here’s how to make your corporate summer event hold more meaning than just time away from the office.
1. An awards ceremony for the under-appreciated
We’ve all been to pep rallies where the company high flyers are rewarded. The same names come up time and again, and it doesn’t take long for most of the audience to switch off. Mix things up by holding an awards ceremony for those vital team members who never get the public recognition they deserve, yet without whom, the company would grind to a halt. Give out awards for Best Team Cheerleader, Brightest Smile First Thing in the Morning, Most Unsung Hero – you get the message. Even the highest achiever in your company didn’t get where they are on their own. When you reward those who support them, the result is that everyone gets motivated to help each other on to even greater heights.
2. Choose a theme that reinforces your brand
Themed events can be highly successful if the theme is relevant to your mission statement and brand. Maybe you want your team to be stars in their industry; choose an astronomy theme and have karaoke songs with links to the stars, moon, and planets, bake astronomy themed cupcakes or even have a night time event under the stars with a talk on the stories behind the constellations.
3. Support a local charity
Charitable corporate events are becoming increasingly popular and, again, you can link this into your brand and reinforce its message to your team. For example, if your company is based in the financial sector, you might want to choose a local not-for-profit organisation or charity and let your employees work with low-income families to put together a household budget or track their credit scores. This will help them see the impact of their work in the real world.
4. Designer goodies
We’re not saying go out and spend a fortune on designer gifts for your team. Rather, organise branded items to hand out to your team for the event or even ask your staff to design company themed swag with a prize for the best concept. T-shirts, towels, mugs, water bottles, etc. can all be branded relatively inexpensively, but it works well to promote a sense of togetherness. You might even want to give out random spot prizes during the year to people who continue to use their branded company items.
5. Choose activities that encourage teamwork
Competitive and collaborative activities are an effective way to help employees build better bonds and learn more about each other. At Kippure Estate, we have a wide range of activities available for you to pick and choose from to create a day that’s personal to your company. Paintballing, orienteering or even a Masterchef-style outdoor cooking session all support your team to bond and learn more about each other’s strengths and weaknesses, which helps them to work together on future projects.
At Kippure Estate, we have a wealth of experience in supporting companies who want to arrange a corporate summer party with genuine meaning. Come rain or shine, people have such a great time, the last thing they’re thinking about is the weather, but if it does rain, we have a spacious marquee available for use, and plenty of rain jackets so the fun can continue.