Being apart doesn’t have to ruin the party! Celebrate from afar with a virtual party that will give all of your attendees a chance to connect – even if you can’t physically come together in person. From birthday parties to company milestone events, there is no limit to the kind of event you can host virtually.
Although your party planning to-do list will be shorter for a virtual party, you’ll still need to ensure you prepare properly and select the right streaming technology for your needs. Check out some ideas below on how to have a virtual party that is actually fun.
How to celebrate with remote employees
The key to a remote company party is figuring out a creative way to keep people engaged and feeling appreciated! Here are a few easy ways to do just that.
1. Buy your team lunch.
Your guests may be scattered from coast to coast, but you can still bring the gesture of a catered meal right to their door! Keep your party inclusive and send everyone some perks they may be used to enjoying in person – and it only takes a short amount of time to coordinate!
Order food through a delivery service like UberEATS or DoorDash that will arrive at the same time of the meeting. If you are worried about and unknown dietary restrictions, or sending food just isn’t an option, you can always offer a meal stipend for your employees to order their own meal.
2. Hold a decoration or costume contest.
Before the event gets started, get your attendees in the spirit with a creative competition. Challenge participants to find any party décor and themed attire they have – or purchase items online if they wish – and reward the most impressive display with a prize.
3. Host a virtual watch party.
Use a platform like Netflix Party to host a virtual watch party with a group simultaneously or share your screen with audio! Distribute a poll beforehand with full-length movie or movie shorts options so you won’t be endlessly scrolling to find something suitable to watch.
4. Heat up the competition with games.
Bring out some old-fashioned fun with games – including anything from board games to a trivia night. Prepare different themed quizzes – from geography to sports history, and beyond – with apps like QuizUp or Kahoot! If you’re feeling a classic board game instead, introduce online board games as an option. For games that work best with smaller numbers, you can even split up into smaller groups with features such as Zoom’s breakout rooms.
5. Raffle or winning prizes.
Incentivize friendly rivalry beyond participating in activities for bragging rights and offer gift cards or subscriptions as a prize! Select from local businesses or common options like Starbucks or Amazon.
Create a channel on your preferred instant messaging platform, such as Slack or Hipchat, to share photos and comments. Bring the fun to social media and make a unique hashtag to attach to your employees’ posts – attach a gift card prize to the best post using the hashtag and tagging your company.
Now that we’ve covered a few ideas for throwing a virtual party with remote employees, here’s a simple check list to bring your event to life.
The checklist for throwing a virtual party in simple steps:
Don’t stress about your virtual company party. Just follow this list.
1. Plan a time.
Pick a time that all attendees will be able to attend and send a calendar invitation. Pay attention to time zones! If your employees are coast-to-coast or even international, this will help avoid ostracizing and specific location.
2. Pick your tech tools.
Check out the best online conference technology, and pick a simple tool to register your attendees and track how they engage. That way you can get answers to follow up survey questions, and see who attended. Next, you’ll want to pick a video platform that best suits your needs and can host all of your attendees within your budget.
- WebEx seamlessly integrates with Cvent, so you don’t need to replicate any of your existing registration work and can mitigate any technical stress.
- Zoom’s free tier allows up to 100 attendees to meet for a maximum of 40 minutes, so if you are looking for more time, consider upgrading your plan.
- Skype allows up to 50 people in a single video chat, making it best suited for smaller companies.
3. Send the link to the video.
Make sure everyone has access to the conference room call. If your chosen technology platform requires a user to be created, ensure that all participants have done so before the party.
4. Find a suitable theme.
Whether you want to center your party around a decade or movie genre, adding a theme to your virtual party will engage your attendees. Check out a few ideas for corporate event themes here.
5. Send reminders.
Communication is key. Send out reminders on multiple platforms – including email and instant messaging – to ramp up excitement.
6. Select your party food and drink.
If you are able, prepare food or snack deliveries to your employees and thank them for participating. While food options will have to be BYO, encourage togetherness with a remote potluck. Attendees can share their favorite or secret family recipe they made for the party – this can also include drink recipes!
7. Stick to your event agenda.
Don’t let your party spiral out of control. Pick appealing activities and put together a virtual party agenda. Set up your agenda on a slide deck – using PowerPoint or Google Slides – with a set number of minutes allowed per slide to keep your party organized and moving along accordingly. Make sure you share the agenda with all attendees beforehand so that everyone is prepared and aware of what to expect.
8. Keep an eye on the clock.
Set a time limit to avoid the party dragging on to the point where everyone is bored – we suggest around an hour or an hour-and-a-half at most. When you are nearing the scheduled end, wrap up the party before it gets awkward and end the meeting for everyone, instead of letting the attendees trickle out of the room.
9. Ask for feedback!
Send out a feedback survey prompting participants for their thoughts or suggestions on how to enhance the experience, or other fun games they may want to include. This is also a great time to send out options for a future meeting or party and gauge when your guests will be available for another bash!
And finally, discover a few ways keep your virtual company party lively with some of the best games.
Check out some popular remote party game ideas
Here are a few virtual party games to boost morale and get people talking.
1. Trivia night:
Curate your own questions for a custom trivia experience, or use an existing game on any topic from general knowledge to geography.
2. Decoration contest:
Give everyone 10 minutes to decorate the room they are in with streamers, balloons, or more.
3. Fill in the blank:
Play an online version of Mad Libs or Word Blanks and get input from all for guaranteed laughs.
4. Selfie competition:
Challenge participants to draw a self-portrait, either on a basic application like Paint or on paper. You may find out some of your colleagues have a hidden artistic talent, but if not, it is sure to be funny.
Endless free bingo cards are available online and can be customized to your theme or related to your company facts.
Belt out your favorite tunes right from your living – with a muted microphone, so you can actually hear the song – and get as animated as you want. Your attendees will have a blast watching their coworkers dance and sing together.
7. Scavenger hunt:
No one needs to leave their house to have a thrilling scavenger hunt by challenging them to find each item within their home.
Now you’re ready to throw the best virtual party!
Give your attendees that human connection we all crave with a virtual bash right from the comfort of their own homes. It is critical to maintain routing celebrations and lift group morale with a good time. Get creative with your agenda and take suggestions seriously to make sure you can cater to the majority, even if it isn’t your personal preference.
Remember – being remote doesn’t have to mean you are totally isolated! You can get so much closer to your colleagues from miles and miles away when you perfect the art of hosting a virtual gathering.
Up next, check out some creative corporate event entertainment ideas.