21 Tips to host a Virtual Holiday Office Party

Can you believe that 2022 is upon us? We have made it through a second year of a global pandemic. Infection rates are down and vaccines are widely available. And now the holidays are here. We all deserve to enjoy quality time spent with others. But the pandemic is not over and maybe you and your company aren’t ready to have a large office gathering, and with some areas maintaining a limit on guests, a virtual holiday celebration may still be the safest option. We all may be tired of being on camera – but better to be safe than sorry. Let’s be grateful for the various ways that we can maintain our connection with others even if it’s not in person. If you are in charge of planning the 2021 Virtual Office Party – here are 21 ideas for celebrating the year and connecting with team members. Happy Holiday!

  1. Scavenger Hunt – whoever has the most items wins!
  2. Name that holiday tune – play a tune, and whoever answers in the chat first is the winner.
  3. From reindeer antlers to elf hats, ask everyone to get into the spirit with a little holiday gear.
  4. Recipe Exchange – it may not be safe to have an office potluck, so the next best thing is for staff to share their favorite recipe.
  5. Share your favorite holiday memory.
  6. Share a favorite holiday toy.
  7. Gift wrap contest – who can wrap a present the fastest?
  8. Gingerbread Wars – send participants a kit and bring everyone together on the video call to decorate together – great for small teams.
  9. Holiday Bingo – use holiday-themed bingo cards.
  10. Naughty List – Never Have I Ever Game – create a list of ten statements, i.e., Never have I ever regifted a gift. Team members should raise their hands and then lower a finger for each of the statements they’ve done. Whoever has the most fingers raised in the end, wins.
  11. Send holiday gift boxes, from tea to cocoa to coffee and cookies – send your staff a little something to show your appreciation for their work this past year and ask that they share with the group, especially if you are able to curate a gift that is unique to each person.
  12. Virtual Secret Santa – teambuilding.com has a gift exchange generator because what holiday party is complete without a Secret Santa.
  13. Holiday Playlist – ask each team member to name their favorite holiday tune and create a playlist for the virtual festivities. Ask team members to guess which coworker added the song to the list.
  14. Virtual Card Exchange – save paper and direct staff to use JibJab or American Greetings to send a little more holiday cheer across desks.
  15. Mystery Holiday Theatre – pick a holiday movie and ask team members to try and identify the movie by repeating lines from the movie.
  16. Holiday Sing-A-Long – there may be a delay, but what’s more fun than caroling, whether in person or across the internet?
  17. Happy Hour – similar to the recipe exchange, if your party is after hours, ask team members to make and share their favorite drink recipe with others.
  18. Holiday Decorating Contest – deck the office, home office, or even each cubicle and ask team members to vote on the best decorations!
  19. For those with team members in different locations, ask them to share what the Holidays look like in those places.
  20. Holiday Photo Booth – Don’t forget to take photos – make sure to use the tile or group option and take photos of team members. Make sure that team members dress up a bit and even use a holiday background for the best shots!
  21. Holiday Trivia – divide up into teams and let team members answer a set of questions about the holiday. Teambuilding.com has a list of different questions to choose from.

Let the festivities begin! Be sure to tell us in an email to info@careermastered.com which tip your company used to make the holiday party more memorable.

Native Chicagoan, Dr. Eugenia Orr is a nationally published freelance writer and journalist, an enthusiastic speaker, a devoted daughter, and a lover of all things beautiful. Dr. Orr loves to deliver messages about community, empowerment, beauty, tranquility, and leadership.

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