The holiday season might look a little different this year with teams fully remote or embracing hybrid, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get festive with your team.
Hosting a company holiday party when your team's dispersed is doable but takes some creativity to make holiday traditions virtual. Charades, holiday trivia, or a standard virtual happy hour, are all easy ways to get merry.
But if you're looking for more tips, here are five virtual holiday party ideas to bring team members together for some festive cheer. 🎄 🕎
1. Virtual Secret Santa
Even though your team might be distributed, you can still include traditional Christmas party games like Secret Santa in your virtual holiday party. Everyone who likes getting gifts (and honestly, who doesn't?) will enjoy this mystery gift exchange.
Hosting a virtual Secret Santa is easy. First, choose a gifting budget, and use a tool like DrawNames or Google Sheets to assign pairings. Each participant will order a gift and send it to their assigned recipient.
Ask your team to wait until the virtual holiday party to open their gifts. During the party, employees can take turns opening their gifts and guessing the identities of their Secret Santas! 🎅
To make it into a fun holiday party game, have the Secret Santas post a clue on their card to hint who it could be too!
If you're using Cooleaf, you can manage the whole thing using the Cooleaf gifting feature. This makes it easy for employees to shop for and send gifts to coworkers:
‘Tis the season of giving, and bringing employees together to do good can be a huge morale-booster. So why not include a virtual giving campaign as part of your festivities?
Virtual events are actually much easier to set up and run. Simply choose a charitable organization to support, pick a fundraising goal, and encourage your employees to donate. Along the way, keep things fun with raffles, step challenges, trivia challenges, and more.
Cooleaf's platform supports virtual giving campaigns with immersive experiences. Throughout your campaign, employees earn reward points that can be redeemed for charity donations.
If you're looking for more in-person volunteer options, you can create a list of local non-profits to encourage remote employees to come in for a volunteer day in their own cities.
3. Holiday bingo
Holiday bingo can be a fun lead-up to your Zoom holiday party, or even done on its own as a team-building activity.
First, make a holiday-themed bingo card filled with fun holiday activities. To make things easy, we've created one for you below:
Any virtual team can get into the holiday spirit with any of these activities, which they can do on their own or with their families, from building a snowman to sporting an ugly sweater.
If you’d rather DIY your own bingo card, we recommend Canva, a great free resource for creating graphics, and if you prefer, you can easily convert your Holiday Bingo Board into a scavenger hunt with employees sharing their festive decor, their holiday cards, and more.
Once you have your card set, you're ready to play bingo! Employees will "mark off" squares on their card by posting a photo of themselves completing each activity.
Sharing photos is a great way to connect and build relationships within a team. By sharing their holiday photos, team members can get the chance to see if they have anything in common. One of the most powerful ways to strengthen your team is through shared interests and activities.
Give prizes to anyone who completes 5, 10, or 15 squares, with a special bonusto the person who completes the most squares. You could also give bonuses to people for particular categories, like "funniest photo" or "most creative snowman."
Want more ideas on how to spread holiday cheer? Download our 12 Virtual Holiday Team Building Activities guide today!
4. Holiday recipe swap
Got an amazing recipe for cranberry sauce or tricks for building that gingerbread house? While your team might not be able to get together for an in-person meal, it's easy to host a holiday recipe sharing swap.
To collect the recipes, use a communication platform or employee experience tool where people can comment on their favorite recipes and interact with one another. Then, gather all of these holiday recipes together and create a holiday recipe book for your team.
To take it to the next level, why not ask for recipes for entrees, party apps, or if you have any mixologists on your team cocktails?
5. Give a modern holiday bonus
The end of the year can be a great opportunity to demonstrate employee appreciation and gratitude. Holiday bonuses are a tangible way to show appreciation, but recognition doesn’t always have to come in the form of cash. Gifts, such as e-gift cards or branded company merchandise, can be even more meaningful. That’s because gift cards have a higher perceived value than cash, and company merchandise can help reinforce your brand.
If you still want to give out holiday bonuses, consider including a small gift, too – this way, you can be sure that your gift will be remembered long after that holiday bonus has been spent. And with the money you’ll save by throwing a virtual holiday party instead of an in-person one, you’ll have plenty left over for gifting. 🎁
Cooleaf coordinates interactive holiday activities and gifting for teams of all sizes. Learn more about the Cooleaf's holiday experience here. It's perfect for remote, hybrid, or in-person teams of all sizes.