Most businesses are holding their Christmas parties online for the first time this year. And since we’ve just held annual Fishmas bash over Zoom, we thought we’d share what we learned with you.
Hopefully, you can learn from the things we got right and the things that went wrong. At the very least, you’ll probably get laugh at our expense!
So here’s what we learnt from running our Fishmas party online…
1. Have a plan (and prepare to throw it out the window)
The huge advantage of a virtual party is you don’t have to worry about getting your boozy team to a your party venue for a particular time – which is great for your team as recruiters tend to love a drink!
Put a structure in place so your team can get excited and know what to look forward to, but be prepared for the whole plan to go out the window when the wine starts flowing.
Here are some things that either didn’t go to plan (or didn’t happen at all) as we all got merrier at Fishmas:
- It took five attempts to get everyone to join the Fishmas quiz
- We opened secret Santa presents an hour late (and since most gifts were sent via Amazon, the online invoice revealed who everyone’s secret Santa was!)
- We were all far to p*ssed to play the party games we’d organised – despite having planned to play bingo and karaoke.
So don’t worry if you throw your plan out the window after you throw back your fourth glass of wine! As long as everyone has a good time, it really doesn’t matter.
2. Have a dress code
We’ve all gotten pretty used to sitting around in our PJs this year, so you need to give your recruiters a little push to make the effort for your Christmas party. Otherwise, you risk seeing Steve from Marketing’s underpants when stands up to pour himself another wine.
Luckily, we had a theme of ‘jumpers and jewels’ for our Fishmas bash – so everyone turned up fully dressed and there weren’t any unfortunate flashes!
3. Make sure your team eat something
We all know that recruiters love a drink (or ten!), so making sure they have something to eat is a must if you’re running a virtual party at your company.
The last thing you want is someone puking all over their work laptop – you’re the one who’ll have to pay to replace it if they do!
Here at Firefish we also all love a bevvie, so ensuring our Fish had some grub to soak up any excessive ‘festive cheer’ was vital!
We had a three-course meal delivered to the houses of each of our Fish, to avoid anyone passing out drunk at 8pm.
4. Know where the mute button is
At every company night out, there’s always one person who rambles on about something they shouldn’t. The good news is that now your party is virtual – you can literally mute them!
If you spot someone who’s a little worse for wear and chatting sh*t, just put them on mute and spare them blushes on Monday morning – they’ll probably thank you for it.
We had one Fishie (who we’ll keep anonymous) who got muted this year. Luckily for them, they didn’t even realise they were on mute and they had a lovely time at the party rambling on to themselves.
5. Don’t accidently end the party when you try to sneak off
Every leader wants to make a sneaky exit at some point in the night - just remember to change the Zoom host before you try to sneak away. Otherwise (like our Chief Fish Wendy), you’ll accidently end the entire online party, making your exit about as subtle as a brick!
One of our Fishies was mid-way through a story when our Chief Fish decided she was ready for bed and accidentally ended the entire party. Smooth!
So make sure you have a back-up host or set the Zoom call to change hosts when you leave – our Chief Fish certainly wishes she had!
6. You can still have a great time online!
An online celebration might not sound like it’s going to be as good as your usual in-person party. But trust me, you and your team will have a great time online.
Everyone is dying to have an opportunity to enjoy themselves and celebrate, especially after a year like 2020. So pour yourself another eggnog, let your hair down and get some painkillers ready for the next day’s hangover – you deserve it!
An online Christmas party is a great way to build a company culture that’ll help your agency grow. Download the eBook get your recruiters pumped and ready to smash next year!
After spending almost a decade in recruitment, Vicki joined Firefish in 2013. As Head of Happiness, she's responsible for all things talent and culture.