We often hear from our clients that the most difficult part of planning a company event is the work that goes into getting people excited for it. We get it and we’re here to help. Here are five ways to build up anticipation and have employees ready to fully enjoy the festivities once the day arrives.
1. Desk Drop
One week prior to the event, place something unexpected on each employee’s desk. This may be something with a personal touch like a handwritten invitation from the CEO. It could be something galvanizing like assorted bandannas to identify teams for the upcoming field day. Perhaps you believe people would appreciate a more practical gesture such as an outdoor event survival kit including items like sunscreen, a water bottle, and sunglasses. And why not toss a little face paint in while you’re at it? No matter what type of event you’re hosting, placing playful surprises on employees’ desks a week prior will remind them that they’re here to have a good time.
2. Share the plans in advance
People like to know what they’re showing up to so they may mentally prepare and think ahead. For any kind of event, share the agenda in advance to allow your employees the chance to tackle time-sensitive tasks and make any necessary preparations in the lead-up to the big day.
3. Host a pre-event
Another event before the main event? You heard it right! The pre-event shouldn’t be extravagant or time-consuming. Instead, if done well, a simple pre-event like happy hour the night before, a pep-rally a week before, or a gathering over lunch can create a buzz that will last.
4. Put people on teams
Teamwork creates an atmosphere for increased loyalty and friendship. It promotes camaraderie and encourages employees to show up for more than just themselves. When possible, we suggest including team-based activities--whether this is adding in scavenger hunt to kick off the day, or simply sorting people onto teams and having those squads sit together for parts of the day. After all, they say teamwork makes the dream work!
5. Include a surprise and delight moment
Oftentimes, our clients decide to add one “wow” moment to their event, a experiential moment made especially for them that becomes a talking point and generates excitement that carries over to the office. A less-serious example of this may be having a piglet or puppy-petting area for an outside event. Another option could be letting people know there will be a product unveiling or a company announcement by the CEO. Channel these sort of ideas and incorporate them into your own events to inspire built-in anticipation for future occasions!
What gets you excited before an event? Do you have any ideas on how to create excitement leading up to a special occasion? Let us know in the comments below!