We are right in the midst of the holiday season, right after Halloween and just before Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year’s! Thanksgiving… most formally known for the day we give thanks for all the loved ones that surround us and all the blessings in our life. It is easy to celebrate the holiday with family at home with delicious food and yummy desserts but what can you do to celebrate Thanksgiving at work?
This year think about ditching the standard catered lunch/potluck and focus on the meaning behind the holiday.
Organize an Activity
As you know, Thanksgiving is all about giving back. There is no better time to get out of the office with a few coworkers to volunteer and give back to your community. Taking a few hours out of your day during the week of Thanksgiving to give your time to a local soup kitchen or homeless shelter can do a lot to help the people in your community — and it helps you bond with your coworkers and increase overall employee engagement.
If getting out of the office to volunteer isn’t an option consider putting together a canned food drive that everyone can contribute to help the less fortunate during the holiday.
Hold a Cooking Contest
Put a spin on the same old potluck with a cooking recipe contest. Get your employees in the Thanksgiving spirit and hold a contest where employees bring in their favorite Thanksgiving dish. Have scorecards ready so that all employees can vote – winner can win a gift card or if you are like us some extra bonsuly points to contribute to a gift card of the employees choice.
It might a little to early for Secret Santa and White Elephant but it is not to early to swap some pies. Pumpkin, sweet potato, or pecan—Thanksgiving is all about pies. Ask employees to bring in their favorite pie and turn into a pie swap around the office.
Create a Gratitude Wall
We should always be thankful but there is no better suited time to be extra thankful. Management should use this time to thank their employees for their endless hard work and dedication throughout the year. Take it a step further and create and decorate a Gratitude Wall where you can encourage employees in the office to write down what they’re thankful for.
Host a Thanksgiving Parade
It doesn’t have to be as big as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade… Set a budget and have each department create a float, have the company vote on the best one and give out prizes. You can scale this up or down depending on your company size but this is an awesome way to get your employees excited and in the holiday spirit.
Set Up a Photo Booth
Set up a photo booth at the office with Thanksgiving props, like turkey masks, fall-colored feather boas, and pumpkin hats. Encourage your staff to post photos on social media with the company’s hashtag.
Host Cocktail Hour
If it is appropriate for your office, host a Thanksgiving Cocktail hour. Pop the champagne and celebrate the work your employees do year-round maybe even mix in a game like “Two Truths and a Lie” with a Thanksgiving twist. Employees can share three holiday-themed statements about themselves, and everyone has to guess which two are true and which one is untrue.
Celebrating Thanksgiving at work can bring the whole office family together and help prevent the pre-holiday burnout. Whether you share a delicious meal or give back through a donation drive, your office Thanksgiving is sure to be a hit.