5 Virtual Holiday Party Ideas for Remote Teams

Not able to do an in-person party this year? No problem! Check out these ideas for alternative ways to bring people together virtually and celebrate your team.

Incentivize pipeline with small, automated rewards

The holidays might look a little different this year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate with your team. Here are five virtual holiday party ideas to bring team members together for some festive cheer. 🎄 🕎

Virtual holiday party ideas for remote teams

1. Virtual Secret Santa

Even though your team might be distributed, you can still include traditional party games like Secret Santa in your virtual holiday party. Everyone who likes getting gifts (and honestly, who doesn't?) will enjoy guessing their Secret Santa.

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 the gifts. During the party, employees can take turns opening their gifts and guessing the identities of their Secret Santas! 🎅 

If you're using Cooleaf, you can manage the whole thing using Cooleaf's gifting feature (launching November 2020). This makes it easy for employees to shop for and send gifts to coworkers:

Employee gifting program: send a reward in seconds!

2. Virtual giving campaigns

‘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?

While in-person events are a great way to raise funds, 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.

Create a virtual giving campaign to boost employee engagement

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:

Holiday bingo card for virtual holiday party

All the activities on this card are social-distance approved, so everyone can participate. If you’d rather make your own bingo card, we recommend Canva, a great free resource for creating graphics.

Once you have your card ready, you're ready to play bingo! Employees will "mark off" squares on their card by posting a photo of themselves completing each activity. 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."

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.

4. Holiday recipe swap 

Got an amazing recipe for cranberry sauce or pumpkin pie? 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.

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. Watch this video to learn more.

Cooleaf for Holiday Gifting
Learn how Cooleaf supports gifting and immersive experiences for the holiday season

Interested in learning more about how to engage and motivate your people? Cooleaf can help — let's chat!

More from the Blog

20+ Creative Ideas to Encourage Employees to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine

20+ Creative Ideas to Encourage Employees to Get the COVID-19 Vaccine

Ready to return to the office? Here's how to incentivize and encourage COVID-19 vaccination among your workforce.

Read Story
On-Demand Webinar: Preventing Healthcare Burnout

On-Demand Webinar: Preventing Healthcare Burnout

Healthcare workers are facing unprecedented levels of job burnout and chronic distress. In this webinar, we sat down with Dr. Mark Greenawald to discuss how leaders can prevent healthcare burnout.

Read Story
5 Ways to Improve Employee Engagement in Healthcare

5 Ways to Improve Employee Engagement in Healthcare

Engaged employees are critical for providing high-quality patient care. But only 44 percent of U.S. hospital workers are highly engaged. What can organizations do to improve employee engagement?

Read Story

Insights in an instant

Get more tips on creating exceptional employee, customer, and prospect experiences with our industry newsletter. Coming right to your inbox about two times a month. Sign up!

We will never share your email address with third parties.