It’s glitz, glam and a whole lot of fun this year for the Peard Group’s annual Christmas celebration at Crown Perth, says Dea Lalovic
As an employee, I‘ve always looked at Christmas parties one of two ways: something you have to do or something you want to do.
Since joining Peard Real Estate, it’s undeniably the latter.
Most companies will agree that Christmas is the traditional time to motivate and reward staff with an annual party, but there’s a huge difference between just throwing a party and planning an event to remember.
Chanel Rebola, Peard Real Estate Group's Human Resources Manager says hosting enjoyable events helps create friendships and adds to team morale, something the Peard Group hold in high regard.
“Our company spends much time and resources ensuring the events we host are enjoyable for staff creating the ultimate company culture.
“The annual Christmas party is particularly special. It’s an event we want staff to look forward to and then remember for weeks to come,” says Ms Rebola.
Last Christmas Peard staff entered a specially decorated winter wonderland at the Grand Ballroom in arguably Perth’s most prestigious venue, the Crown Perth. No detail was spared, from ‘frosted’ decorations, beautiful table settings, a scrumptious three-course menu and all-night entertainment.
It was my first big Peard ‘shindig’, and boy was I impressed! Compared to the usual BBQ in the park I was used to with previous employers, this was something on a whole new scale.
Over 240 staff and their partners partied into the night, mingling and dancing to old school classics performed by Darren Reid and the Soul City Groove.
This year, Peard Group employees are looking forward to “dressing to impress” for a Hollywood-inspired night where Crown Perth’s ballroom will be transformed into a red carpet celebrity event.
Ms Rebola says the annual Christmas event is all about bringing employees together and rewarding their hard work.
“A company Christmas party is one of the biggest company celebrations of the year where staff can enjoy getting together in a social setting to celebrate the working year behind them as a team.
“It’s a chance for everyone to relax and mingle and it is at events like the annual Christmas party where company loyalty and culture is built,” says Ms Rebola.
A Christmas party is nothing new and many rganisations will hold some kind of festive celebration to acknowledge the achievements of the year gone by, but it’s the Peard Group’s “premium” take on everything they do which sets the company apart, explains Ms Rebola.
“As a Group, we pride ourselves on organising quality events throughout the year and the Christmas party is no exception.
“The end of the year function is the company’s social event of the year, where unless away on holiday, most staff choose to attend and with much excitement due to the event's reputation”.
But like everything, there is a serious side to any corporate event and this is where HR play a crucial role.
“When it comes to hosting a night-time event with alcohol provided, responsibility and the safety of staff is of utmost importance to the Peard Group’s HR team.
“There is naturally a liability on our part when we are providing free flowing alcohol throughout an evening but with the right entertainment, plenty of food and event timetable we certainly minimise any risks.
“We send our Company Function policy out prior to any event which details the company expectations.
“We want everyone to have a fabulous time but of course, employee safety is our first priority”.
There's nothing like letting your hair down at the end of the working year and enjoying a fun-filled evening with your co-workers.
Most would agree that working relationships are often built away from work, so it makes perfect sense that a company would invest in events that help facilitate this. It’s much easier to communicate with someone who you consider to be a friend rather than a stranger you happen to share an office with.
The Peard Group hosts several events throughout the working year where employees can have some fun and get to know one another on a more personal level.
Perhaps then that’s the Peard Group’s key to success… the ultimate team culture.
Tips for organising a Christmas party to remember
Have you been given the task of planning the next end of year event? Having just recently organised the Peard Groups Christmas party Kirsten knows the massive task at hand all too well. She shares her tips on organising a successful ‘do’!
Give yourself time
Start as early as you can to make sure you’re ahead of the game. No matter how long you think it’s going to take you, I can guarantee it’s going to take longer. You will have to allow time for responses, meetings and phone calls, not to mention securing your favoured venue and entertainment.
Set the date early
Christmas is a busy time of year, especially when it comes to social events. So it is best to get in early and secure your desired date to make sure that your guests can all attend. If your office is on a smaller scale, consider sending potential options around to your office to see what day suits better. This will also give you an indication of numbers for the event.
To ensure a good attendance rate, send a ‘save the date’ email around your office once you have decided on the final date. At this point you don’t need to know any of the details, it is just important to make sure the majority of your guests can make it.
Set a workable budget
The size of your budget will obviously determine the type of Christmas party you are able to organise. The budget will impact the venue, food and drink options, entertainment and decorations so it is important to know what kind of a budget you are working with so you don’t end up planning something that is far from realistic.
Once you have decided on an appropriate budget, you can then allocate funds depending on their importance to the event. It is important to keep in mind that a Christmas party is designed to ‘thank’ the staff for their hard work throughout the year, so try to ensure that the event will be particularly enjoyable for the staff.
Decide on the direction
Think about the type of party you want to organise – where do you want to have it? What time of day? How many people? Will partners be invited? Will you pay for them? Will there be a theme? What is the dress code?
Find a venue
Think of possible venue options that are available, within budget and are in a good location for guests. The earlier you book the venue, the better. Select three options and request a quote from each based on your requirements.
Organise site visits so you can visually weigh up each option before making a final decision. Don’t forget to take photos to help you identify different options from one another.
Talk to the venues events team about what items are included and what items you will need to hire i.e. Furniture, AV, staff, decorations and theming.
What type of food would you like served; Finger food or sit down meal? Would you like it served to your guests or more of a buffet style?
Depending on what type of venue you have chosen you will need to decide between using in-house catering (which will work out much cheaper) and hiring in external caterers – if this is even an option for you.
Think about providing a vegetarian option if required and try to accommodate for as many other dietary requirements as possible.
Firstly, you need to decide whether alcohol will be served at all.
If you are planning to provide alcohol, consider what drinks are going to be available; Wine and beer only or spirits as well? Will they be pre-ordered or paid on consumption?
Have a think about how you want your drinks to be served. This will depend on the style of the evening you have planned and how your food will be served also.
Decide whether you want to have an action packed event lined up with a program of games, activities or live entertainment. You may wish to simply opt for a DJ or cheaper still, a reliable iPod with a carefully considered playlist.
Depending on your company, and the theme, you’ll need to make a list of appropriate decorations to help style your event and bring it to life. This could include anything from entrances, table centres and staging to dress codes, music, food and drink, each element adding to the desired theme.
If you’re considering a more traditional ‘Christmas’ themed party, it’s usually a good idea to opt for the commercial type decorations, rather than anything with religious connotations as these could potentially make people free uncomfortable.
Once you have finalised the date, location and theme, you can begin to invite your guests. If costs are a prime concern, you can get away with sending out an email invitation to all employees inviting them and a partner to the event.
Make sure your invitation includes an RSVP date and any special dietary requirement questions to avoid any hiccups on the day. It’s also a wise idea to send out a reminder a day or so before the party.
Create the table plan (for seated events)
If you’re opting for a seated dinner, consider creating a floor plan. Plan your tables around who will connect and mingle well with each other, avoiding any awkward confrontations between those who don’t get along so well.
Make sure you have a seating plan visible at the entrance to the event so that everyone knows what table they are seated at. For an even more personalised touch, you can consider making place cards for each table.
Does your current employer offer an unbeatable working culture and reward you for your hard work? Experience the Peard Real Estate difference- call Melissa Farrell, Business Resource Manager on 0404 084 244 for a confidential chat.