With Covid restrictions lasting over a year now, we’re finally looking towards coming out of the other side in the coming months. Working from an office has been very different for the vast majority of us, whether you’ve had to work from home or in a small work bubble, and with this has also come the decline of office celebrations. Its hugely important to take advantage of workplace celebrations as it helps to boost morale, build trust between employees and create good working relationships.
For obvious reasons, many workplaces have had to stop or change the way they celebrate workplace celebrations, whether it be for birthdays or hitting work targets, with many big milestones now going uncelebrated. Without being able to pop for a post-work drink or meal, or celebrate in the office with a buffet lunch or fun quiz, it’s not surprising that some employees are feeling disconnected from their co-workers.
With a large percentage of people working from home, there are ways to mark occasions virtually, but this also comes with its own set of challenges. After the stress and uncertainty of the last year, employers shouldn’t be shying away from the chance to mark office celebrations and instead, embrace the ways in which they can do so safely. With this in mind, here are some ways that you can mark office celebrations during Covid.
If you’ve got Zoom fatigue, then this might sound like a terrible idea, but there are still ways in which you can make virtual celebrations fun for everyone. It doesn’t need to cost much or take a lot of time, even simply decorating your background or wearing party hats can be enough to make a normal virtual meeting more celebratory.
If there is a big work occasion on the horizon, such as a birthday or work milestone, then you might want to celebrate with something a bit more special. Why not arrange for cocktail making boxes to be sent to your employees so that you can have a cocktail making (and drinking!) party, or organise a big work quiz complete with prizes such as an extra day off at the end of the month or an early finish one Friday afternoon. After a year of virtual meetings, it’s understandable if a virtual celebration sounds tiring or unpleasant, but there are still some great ways in which you can make celebrations fun.
If you’re now back in the office but are following social distancing rules or reduced employee bubbles, then thinking of Covid-safe celebrations can leave you scratching your head. With so many guidelines to consider, it can seem overwhelming and almost impossible to come up with a fun way to celebrate an office occasion. However, there are still some ways you can make the occasion fun for you and your colleagues.
If you usually go for lunch and some drinks to celebrate, then why not do this in the office with a takeout meal from your favourite restaurant and some wine, either sat at desks spaced out or in a communal space. You could also make up an afternoon tea box for your employees, filled with sandwiches, cakes, bakery products, savoury snacks and, of course, tea! You could even jazz it up with a glass of prosecco!
Just because you are in the office doesn’t mean that you can’t celebrate in the ways you usually would, you may just need to use your imagination!
Keep Communicating With Your Employees
If some of, or even all of your employees, are still working remotely, then it’s really important to maintain frequent communication with them and keep them in the loop, the same way you would if you were still in the office. It can be really easy to forget to update your employees on any important work progress or updates, especially if it would be something that you usually celebrate in the office.
With so many tasks to complete on a daily basis, working from home can mean that it’s easy to neglect employee recognition and virtual meetings can soon become drab and dull if everyone has lost interest, so try to schedule regular catch-ups with your employees and add in some sparkle or cheer to your meetings to get everyone feeling motivated and upbeat again.
For more information on how you can ensure your staff safety in their post Covid-19 office space, read this blog.