During the holidays, many companies throw office parties in order to celebrate the end of yet another successful year. Lift Brands is no different. Peter Taunton, the CEO and founder of Lift Brands, shared a few tips for hosting a party that will be the toast of the town (or at least the cubicle).
CS: Does Lift Brands celebrate with its employees during the holidays?
PT: A week or so before Christmas, we have a holiday party. Employees work in the morning, then the entire company gets together off-site for a few hours in the afternoon. It’s a chance for people across all our brands to talk about family, relationships and the overall holiday spirit. You can tell the entire office looks forward to it every year. As we get closer to the party, the enthusiasm ramps up.
CS: What are some basic rules for throwing a successful office party?
PT: We want everyone to have fun and be safe, that’s most important. If people are going to over-indulge, you need to plan for designated drivers and make sure they’re getting home safe. Besides that, I aim to have some form of entertainment, plenty of food and drinks available, and a moment where I can express my gratitude for the entire team. Our team works so hard, it’s great to let loose for an afternoon.
CS: Should employees be allowed to bring a guest?
PT: No, because it takes away from the office dynamic. When you bring your spouse and she or he isn’t part of the work environment, you’re going to focus on making sure they’re having a good time — as any caring significant other would do. That’s why we have our holiday party during the day. Employees flow from work in the morning to the festivities in the afternoon where they can connect with each other outside the office walls. It’s a great opportunity for the staff to engage with employees they wouldn’t otherwise connect with every day.
CS: Do you think it’s important to celebrate the holidays with your employees in some way?
PT: Absolutely. When I look at the corporate office, I see a group of talented individuals who are passionate about what they do. I’m committed to rewarding them for all the hard work they do for my brands and me.
CS: As your company has grown, has it become more difficult to make everyone feel included during celebrations?
PT: If everyone is participating in the entertainment, they inherently have to interact. I don’t feel like I’ve had to force any employee into participating. I try to make sure all the directors are there to get everyone involved. It can be hard to avoid department cliques, but we’ve been lucky to have an office filled with high-energy, caring individuals who vibe together.
By Rachel Zabonick