Way back in 2014 we wrote a blog onthe importance of the Christmas party– and every year, in the build up to the Christmas season, it still gets lots of attention. Since so many people seem to value Pull’s partying expertise, we thought we’d share our tips for the other big annual bash on our calendar: the summer party!
I caught up with Virginia, who as well as being our master of Digital Marketing is also our chief party organiser, to find out what makes a summer party like no other.
Q: What are the ingredients for a great summer party?
A: Sex. Sex and money.
But not actually. The main thing is to listen to what your team want to do. This year we came up with a load of suggestions and then did a poll internally (using the technology of one of our clients, Meetoo) to find out what the most popular option was. It was tight, but we decided on going to The Comedy Store in London.
This might be tricky for a bigger company, but seeing as it’s easy for us, it’s definitely worth doing!
Q: Any other tips?
A: Well, I wasn’t completely kidding about the money. It’s good to have a decent budget put aside for the party: doing it on a shoestring won’t be much fun. Our attitude is that we all work hard during the year, and this generates some extra cash that can be put toward having an amazing day to celebrate.
Q: What’s your most epic summer party memory?
A: We went to Ascot last year – that was pretty awesome. A full 12 hours of alcohol, gambling, horses, dressing up, all the good stuff!
Q: You don’t seem to do traditional office parties, but instead have entire days out. Is it important to you to have an all-day event with fun activities?
A: I think it’s important to get out of the office and give your team the entire day to celebrate. It’s about showing your people that they’re valued and rewarding them for their hard work. We’re quite a social bunch – we like to get together for lunch and drinks. That attitude creates a strong sense of teamwork and camaraderie, and the summer party is a good chance to nurture this!
Going out also ensures no two parties are ever the same – there’s always something new and exciting to look forward to. It gives the team lots of cool shared experiences to bond over.
Q: Are there any drawbacks to the out-of-office approach to party planning?
A: People don’t always do what they’re told! I’m not naming names, but last year at Ascot one of the boys didn’t wear a tie. But he got his comeuppance because he was caught flouting the dress code and was made to buy a tie.
People often forget where to meet, or turn up late – but that’s just typical stuff you always have to factor in as an event planner!
Q: These parties must generate some great drama – care to share?
A: There was one really dramatic year before my time. They also went to London to the Comedy Store, where we’re returning 10 years later. Someone left their wallet and everyone had to go back, which definitely caused a bit of a commotion.
This year, we’re anticipating a ruckus from one member of the team who gets quite feisty when he drinks: we’re placing bets on the likelihood of heckling.
Q: What’s your favourite bit of the party?
A: The party itself is always loads of fun, but the best thing might be all the post-party catch up and gossip. It provides a shared framework and exciting things to talk about – just makes the workplace so much more fun in the following weeks!