Great Ideas for Planning Social Events at the Office

Estimated reading time: 2 mins

Social events are a great way of enabling office workers to kick back and relax. Many friendships and close working relationships form by doing something different than what we do in the ‘day job. I’ve got some ideas for something a bit different – why not give them a try?

Bring in a Mobile Bar

A popular choice I am sure. Mobile bar hire can be a lot of fun for a group of colleagues – and not just for the alcohol drinkers. Many offer a wide range of options to cater for all tastes, such as milkshakes, fruit juices and smoothies. Mixologists don’t just pour – they entertain. I hired a mobile bar to cater for a team event and it was well received, especially by the people who work hard and don’t get to visit their local bar too often. A very welcome break it was, let me tell you.

A Play in a Day

This idea pulled straight from my wife’s playbook. Cheryl runs a performing arts company and has occasionally, like many practitioners, done a ‘Play in a Day’ for corporate clients. It’s a fairly simple idea with a hectic schedule: devise, write, develop and perform a play in a single business day – punctuated with a hearty lunch and maybe even a glass or two of vino.

These are a hoot – and a perfect way of encouraging people out of their shell. Putting on costume, or hiding behind a mask, seems to change people and help them lose their inhibitions. Often, the shyest member of the team is the one who acts the most boldly.

The Classic BBQ

Who hasn’t been to a barbecue at the office? Often run on a lawn or the car park, these can’t fail to get workers in high spirits. Best if the leaders and senior managers are the ones flipping the burgers or falafel (show me one worker who doesn’t want to see their boss in an apron and chef’s hat?) BBQs are easy to set up and can be done on a tight budget – if cash is not flowing then everybody can contribute a small amount. Once the health and safety precautions have been put in place (let’s not have any accidents) let the hot sauce flow!

Sushi Masterclasses

One of my faves for sure. Sushi has become very popular over the last decade or two, but still, some people are a bit wary of it. Too scared of the unusual ingredients and raw fish I think. A sushi masterclass at the office can dispel the myths associated with it. If you’ve watched sushi being made, you’ll know that it is an art form in itself – sushi chefs are masters in their own right. But that doesn’t mean we can’t all join in the fun. It’s a great laugh – creating maki rolls filled with all sorts of fresh ingredients for the benefit and enjoyment of our co-workers.

Hope these ideas have inspired you to do something a bit different next time you have a coworker get-together!


About the author /

Simon is a creative and passionate business leader dedicated to having fun in the pursuit of high performance and personal development. He is co-founder of Applied Change, a Business Change consultancy based in the UK. Simon is also an Ambassador for Gloucestershire business. Simon is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Professional Development.

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