Looking for your next team-building event, to boost employee morale, or just a reward your employees with a party? Then consider an office tailgating party! Throwing a tailgating party at the office can be a fun event for employees and can encourage some bonding in a more relaxed atmosphere. The coming of Fall usually coincides with the coming of football season, so this is a great time to treat your employees. To help you host a successful outing, we’ve put together some office tailgate party ideas to guide you along the way.
Make sure you plan ahead
For anyone who plans parties for the office, they know it’s important to plan ahead. It’s a good idea to form a small group so the entire process isn’t up to one individual. Use your office communication tools (email, memos, message boards, etc.) to let employees know about the party in advance. This will build excitement and help encourage participation. Since everyone has lives outside of the office, you’ll want to decide whether to have the party during company time or off hours.
With that being said, most football games are played on Thursday nights, or Saturday and Sunday afternoons, so it’s more than likely that the party may include some time out of normal working hours. A couple options to consider are hosting the party during off hours or planning a pre-game event at the end of the workday.
- Party during off-hours – Doing this allows you to schedule a party during an actual football game. This can add to a more authentic feel.
- Pre-game event at end of the workday – This option allows you to have the party during some office hours and give employees something to look forward to throughout the day.
Whatever you end up choosing, just be sure to properly plan ahead for the size of your organization and ensure that your communications reach your employees.
Setting up a tailgating space
Utilizing your parking lot provides a great option for hosting the party, plus there would be no extra cost to you. Beginning the night before, you’ll want to block off a section of the parking lot with either cones or rope. This will prevent employees from having to move their cars during the day and will make setting up for the party easier. If throwing the party in a parking lot is not an option, then you could use a large conference/meeting room. Either way, you’ll want to designate areas specifically for grilling, eating, games, and socializing.
For those who are looking to have their party out of normal working hours, you could reserve a tailgating space at an actual football game. This would take some more coordination but can lead to an awesome game day experience for your employees. If this seems too daunting, you could hire this piece out. For a fee, you could outsource the event to a company who provides everything including: location, tent, food, drinks, games, TVs, trailers, etc.
Provide popular tailgating food
No tailgating party would be complete without food! For these types of events, simplicity is key. Grilled foods such as burgers, brats, hot dogs, and wings are common. Smaller finger foods and plenty of chips and dips are great additions. Keeping it simple will also help whoever is on cooking duty to mingle and socialize with everyone. If you don’t want to worry about doing the grilling yourself, consider hiring a caterer to take care of the food for you. That way you are free to focus on entertaining your employees.
You’ll also want to provide a variety of drink options. Beer is a staple at most tailgating a sporting events but you’ll want to offer non-alcohoic options as well for those who don’t drink. It’s also a good idea that, if you do provide alcoholic beverages at the party, you ensure everyone has a way to get home.
Decor and games
Football and tailgating decorations are fairly inexpensive to purchase from any party supply store. You can also encourage employees to wear their favorite team’s jersey or other team gear to the office that day. Providing games can help bring out the competitive spirit among your employees. Games like ladder golf and Cornhole are popular at all tailgating events. You could even take this opportunity to have some custom-made corn hole boards made that feature your company logo. Prizes such as gift cards or company swag could be given out. For those who enjoy video games, setting up a Madden tournament is always fun. And don’t forget to have a couple footballs around to play catch!
Have fun and enjoy
An office tailgating party can be a fun way to reward your employees for their hard work. This can provide them a way to unwind in a relaxed environment and help boost overall morale. These are only a few tips to help guide you, but no matter what you end up doing, the overall point is to have fun and enjoy the party. I’m always thankful for the opportunities to meet and get to know my coworkers outside of the office, I find that it helps build relationships and leads to better teamwork inside the office.
I’d like to hear your opinion on this topic, for those who have thrown an office tailgating party, how was it received? Leave your comments below!