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A Festive Guide to Holiday Team Building Event Etiquette

It’s that wonderful time of year again when the air is filled with the sounds of jingle bells, laughter, and the spirit of togetherness. But as we all know, the holiday season is not just about sipping hot cocoa by the fire and unwrapping presents. It’s also about connecting with your team and strengthening those all-important bonds that make your workplace feel more like a second home. Yes, we’re talking about holiday team-building events! 

But, here’s the thing—while these events are intended to be fun and merry, they also require a certain level of decorum. After all, you don’t want to be remembered as the one who brought a gag gift to a Secret Santa exchange or the one who spiked the eggnog a little too generously, do you? 

So, sit back, relax, and let’s navigate the do’s and don’ts of holiday team-building event etiquette together. From choosing the right attire to understanding the unwritten rules of gift-giving, we’ve got you covered. All set? Great, let’s dive in!

Plan Activities That Foster Inclusion

When organizing your holiday team-building event, prioritize inclusivity at every stage of the planning process. Choose games and activities that accommodate a diverse array of interests, personalities, and skill sets, ensuring that everyone can participate comfortably. BreakoutIQ offers engaging virtual team-building experiences that can be tailored to accommodate various participant requirements and preferences.

In addition to activity selection, consider aspects such as time zones, accessibility, and cultural sensitivity. For instance, schedule your event at a time that is convenient for team members across different regions and provide alternative participation options, like recording the event for those who cannot attend live. Plus, make sure that the selected holiday themes are welcoming and inclusive for individuals of diverse cultural backgrounds.

Establish Clear Guidelines and Expectations

Having well-defined guidelines for your team-building event helps maintain a sense of professionalism while ensuring a safe and respectful environment for all. Before the gathering, share with your employees a clear set of rules outlining acceptable behavior and communication, as well as any technical requirements for virtual participation.

Encourage attendees to share any concerns they might have regarding etiquette or event format, and address these concerns proactively. This open communication will set the stage for a successful event and help maintain everyone’s comfort level throughout the gathering.

Maintain Professionalism and Respect

Though holiday team-building events are relatively informal and geared towards fun, it’s essential to remember that they are still workplace functions. Therefore, maintaining a sense of professionalism is crucial to ensuring a comfortable and productive event.

Remind employees that respectful behavior, both in language and actions, is expected at all times. Even though team members may be enjoying a more relaxed atmosphere, it’s essential to keep conversations and behavior respectful and work-appropriate. This consideration extends to the attire worn during the event, particularly in virtual settings where there may be a tendency to dress more casually. Encourage attendees to maintain a balanced level of professionalism in their appearance to create a uniformly respectful environment.

Promote Teamwork and Collaboration

Holiday team-building events aim to promote unity and encourage teamwork among employees. To achieve this effectively, select activities that require collaboration, communication, and problem-solving. BreakoutIQ offers an extensive range of cooperative games and challenges, fostering shared experiences and opportunities for personal connection.

Divide attendees into groups or pairs during the activities, and ensure that each team represents a mix of employees from different departments, levels, and backgrounds. This approach helps individuals get to know their colleagues better and encourages cross-functional collaboration beyond the event itself. Additionally, incorporate opportunities for reflection and feedback, which can be especially valuable for remote teams.

Balance Fun and Sensitivity

While the primary goal of holiday team-building events is to engage and entertain employees, it’s essential not to lose sight of the sensitive aspects that many people may associate with this time of year. Be mindful of different experiences, beliefs, and traditions, and avoid making assumptions about participants’ religious affiliations or the extent of their holiday celebrations.

Consider incorporating opportunities for charitable activities or philanthropy within your team-building event, such as sponsoring a toy drive or volunteering for a food bank. This approach adds a sense of purpose and unity while allowing employees to give back together during the festive season.

Adjust Activities According to Participant Feedback

No matter how well-planned your team-building event may be, it’s essential to remain attentive to participants’ experiences, adjusting activities, and guidelines if necessary. Reviewing feedback in real-time or from prior events can help you make crucial adjustments and optimize the experience for all attendees. Encourage open communication and provide channels for participants to express their thoughts on various aspects of the event.

Practical Tips for Virtual Holiday Team Building Events

Virtual gatherings come with their unique set of etiquette guidelines, especially in remote and hybrid work environments. Here are some practical tips to help your virtual event run smoothly and professionally:

  1. Provide technical support: Ensure that participants have the necessary resources and knowledge to navigate the virtual event platform and encourage employees to test their connectivity and equipment beforehand.
  2. Establish a designated facilitator: Assign an individual to lead the event, provide instructions, manage breakout rooms, and troubleshoot any technical issues that may arise.
  3. Encourage active participation: Encourage attendees to use the chat feature, share reactions, and engage in virtual activities to promote active involvement throughout the event.
  4. Discourage multi-tasking: While the virtual context may invite additional distractions, remind attendees to remain focused on the event and avoid working on unrelated tasks during the gathering.

By following the etiquette guidelines outlined in this article, you can create a welcoming, inclusive, and enjoyable atmosphere during your company’s holiday team-building events, ultimately fostering stronger connections and collaboration among your employees.

Elevate Your Holiday Team Building Event with BreakoutIQ

The essence of holiday team-building event etiquette lies in respect for diversity, active participation, and maintaining professional boundaries. It’s about striking a balance between unbridled fun and decorum, ensuring that everyone feels included, and contributing to an environment that fosters mutual respect and understanding.

Ready to plan a memorable and engaging holiday team-building activities at work that adheres to proper etiquette? Connect with BreakoutIQ today and explore their wide range of customizable activities designed to cultivate teamwork and inspire growth, all while maintaining a festive and enjoyable atmosphere for your employees.

Embrace the spirit of the season and make the most of these events. Because who knows? You might just find yourself eagerly looking forward to the next one. Happy holidays, everyone!