How to Celebrate Thanksgiving in the Office

It goes without saying that there are plenty of ways to celebrate Thanksgiving in the workplace. However, this year you can focus on the holiday’s reasons, and show your appreciation to all your employees and encourage them to give back to your community. To make things easier for you, we’ve come up with a list of ideas to help you plan this holiday in the office.

Decorate The Workplace

No celebration is complete without decorations. You can create a festive Thanksgiving environment with pumpkins, fall foliage, and turkeys. Also, use tablecloths and napkins in orange or gold, the most typical colors of this holiday. 

To this, you can add scented candles in the best autumn style.

Get in the Giving Spirit

If you are looking to give back this holiday season, there are many ways to get involved and help.

You can start by participating in a volunteer activity as a group and join a canned food drive or serve at a soup kitchen. You can also set up events with charities to then establish a long-term relationship with a non-profit partner in the area.  

To encourage your employees, you can allow them to take time off to do a volunteer project of their choice.

Thank Your Employees

Gratitude and recognition of achievements are two highly effective strategies. Employees realize that the organization values their efforts and that their work is important to meet the company’s objectives.

As we have already said before, gratitude does not always imply financial rewards. The emotional salary is a great way to thank employees for the company’s good performance.

Organize a Dessert Contest

Dessert is the best part of any celebration. Ask everyone who wants to participate to bring in a home-made dessert to compete. 

Once all desserts are out and tested, vote for the best one and give the winner a fun prize, such as becoming the Dessert King or Queen, leaving an hour earlier, or a gift card.

Start New Traditions

Since Thanksgiving is a time of tradition, it’s a great opportunity to think about the traditions in your own office. Don’t have one fun tradition yet? It’s never too late to start!

Easter At The Office: Spread the Spring-Time Fever

Easter is a time to celebrate the return of life to the Earth, and many of us celebrate for religious reasons; regardless, Easter weekend is a fun time to enjoy candy and cute bunnies, right? There are few places that fun holidays shouldn’t find their way into, and the office is no exception! What are you doing at your office building to get excited for Spring and Easter Sunday?

1. Good Old Egg Hunt

Surprise the office with a giant bag of stuffed eggs this year; you can buy empty eggs and fill them yourself with wrapped or individual candies. Get creative and place raffle tickets in some if you’d like to give away a big candy bar or gift basket! Arrive at your office early one morning, or stay late the night before so that you can hide eggs; make sure to hide them in great spots – you aren’t all still kids, after all!

2. Oh, Where… Oh, Where

For this fun game, pick up several cheap stuffed bunnies, or other Easter characters, and hide them in precarious places around the office. Make at least two of them extremely difficult to spot! Ask everyone to keep an eye out for the naughty bunnies, and have them send a list to you at the end of the day describing where each of them is. Offer up a prize for everyone that finds all of the dastardly bunnies!

3. Decorate!

Honestly, it won’t feel like a special day or week unless you toss up some decorations, everyone knows that! Pick up some cheap paper lantern-type eggs, glass clings, and maybe some pastel-colored tuille. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to bring some festivity to the office; keep it simple, and don’t overdo it!

4. Pot/Snackluck

The holidays are about getting together and sharing with friends and family, after all; why not extend that to your co-workers and employees? Let the office family in on the food fun, too, by setting up a potluck that everyone can share. Send out an email in advance so that everyone can plan, prepare, and coordinate dishes!

5. Gift Baskets

Themed baskets filled with joy and love; what’s better to put together and give on Easter than a gift basket? Treat these like a Secret Santa event by asking everyone to sign up in advance. Have everyone pick a name, set a dollar limit, and decide on a day to exchange baskets! Ask everyone to decorate their basket with fun Easter colors and stickers, just to make it a little bit more fun.

What other fantastic things have you and your office set up for Easter? Take some time this year to step-up your holiday game!

New Year’s Resolutions for the Workplace – Turn 2020 Into an Extraordinary Year for Your Career

Another year has come and gone – with it, a new decade has begun! Whether or not you feel a sense of accomplishment as you look back on the past ten years, bear in mind that the next ten years are well within your control. 

It can be intimidating to consider your resolutions for this year, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t do it! The dawning of a new year is a paramount time for reflection and repurposing all of your old, hidden dreams! There’s no time like the present; even if you missed a few weeks in January, you can still create resolutions for the whole year.

Don’t know where to start? New Year’s resolutions can be as simple or as personal as you like – the key is that only you will know what you need to focus on. The bigger your goal, the more likely you’ll need to build in checkpoints and smaller tasks within the “big picture”. Take a peek at some of these common resolutions that can be used for your career.

1 – Update the Resume

2019 was likely a busy year for you; take some time to catalog all of your achievements and add any new roles you’ve been assigned to. Updating your resume at least once a year will help make applying for promotions or a new job much less difficult – and it can be nice to reflect on the previous year from a professional standpoint.

2 – Review Your Social Media Profiles

Sites like LinkedIn and any Facebook or Twitter business profiles should be kept as up to date as possible; if you find yourself struggling to keep up with these, set a resolution to check-in with them at least twice per month. Employers routinely check potential applicants’ personal and work profiles for misconduct and brand misrepresentation, so it’s best to not post anything about work that is not positive. Follow general common sense, and don’t engage when one of your friends is poking at the company you work for.

3 – Reorganize and Resolve to Stay That Way

It can be a hassle to keep the workspace clean and tidy (physically and digitally), especially in the middle of a busy week. Staying organized can help keep your head clear and ward off anxiety, so it’s the perfect way to start off the New Year! Arrive at work 15-20 minutes early to go through all of your supplies and items; toss anything irrelevant and restock any items you use often, like pens and notepads. 

To make this most effective, try spending an extra 2-5 minutes every night before you leave tidying up your desk for the next day. Much like waking up to a clean kitchen and coffee pot, arriving to work to see a clean desk will help start each day on the right foot.

4 – Improve Your Health at Work

While most New Year’s resolutions are related to health and fitness, they don’t have to be! This is a simple and effective way to put your health a little more central to your daily life – without working too hard. Try doing things like these to be a little more active at work every day:

  • Pack lunches for yourself (if you don’t normally do so) and try to keep them healthy!
  • Take the stairs rather than the elevator. If you work in a tall building, challenge yourself to take one more flight each week – see how far you can go!
  • Inquire about a standing desk at the office. Some ergonomics overseers will have some going spare that you can use unless a doctor-ordered request comes in.
  • Swap your office chair for an exercise ball. These seats can force you to have good posture and engage your back muscles all at the same time!
  • Work stretch breaks into your daily routine. Set alarms if you have to!

5 – Make a List and Work Through it

Literature can be one of the greatest ways to initiate a kick in the pants; motivational books have been a sensation for many years, and it’s not for no reason. If you’re looking to change your outlook on work, learn some new skills, or simply regain your passion for what you do, pick out a few books that you’d like to read by the end of this year. Blogs and podcasts can be a quick way to get motivational inspiration, as well – subscribe to a new blog and read any posts that interest you.

Anything you come up with will be a great starting point. As you continue through the year and accomplish your goals, think of new ones! If you’re always reaching towards goals, you’re always making progress in your daily life; the important thing is that you stick to your guns and keep taking steps forward. 

So, how about it? Are you ready to kick off the New Year with a bang?

Holiday Decorating: Office Style

If we’re all being completely honest, the majority of “holiday cheer” and the sought-after “holiday spirit” comes from all of the brilliant lights and decorations we see all around us! Driving through downtown the saplings may be strung with white lights; your city or town might even decorate a tall evergreen in the park! Decorated houses also spark joy, with their twingly lights, garlands and lawn inflatables. Regardless of what holiday you celebrate, it’s uplifting and might even spark joy in your heart to see inflatable snowmen and hear holiday music.

With all this being said, what better way to carry the holiday spirit with you than to bring it into your workplace? Positive attention to details like holiday decoration and themed treats are known to lift the office atmosphere and contribute to positive company culture. While it might seem like a great undertaking to decorate the office, it will surely be worth the smiles on everyone’s faces.

Talk With Management

If you will be taking point on holiday decoration, reach out to upper management to see what ground rules there are. They might want to keep large nails out of the walls and avoid hanging items from the ceiling, for example. You may also want to ask what, if any, existing holiday decorations they have in storage – maybe a previous manager enjoyed decorating but no longer works for the company! Start off on the right foot, and don’t overstep any boundaries if you don’t own the space yourself. 

Be Prepared

Unless you’ll be using decorations already stored at your office, you’ll likely need to transport items from home or a department store. It’s best to take a look at your canvas, so to speak, in order to get an idea for how much you will need. Will you run string lights over the top of all the cubicles? Do you want a holiday village for the break room? Are there many windows that you’d like to decorate with window clings or snowflakes? Take time to make a list of the ideas that come to mind when you are observing your office.

If it’s within your budget and your vehicle allows, it’s better to have too many decorations than not enough. If you find you are left with extra items, bring them home with you or send them home with a coworker – spread the cheer!

Have Fun!

The whole point of decorating is to spread holiday cheer and help build positive memories. Try not to view decoration as a chore, but, rather a fun activity that you can get others involved in. Pick up a couple of boxes of sugar cookies from the bakery, a box of hot coffee from the local coffee shop, and invite some coworkers to join you! Don’t forget to play some peppy holiday music as you hang lights and decorate windows – that would be a missed opportunity!

11 Brilliant Co-Worker & Employee Gift Ideas for Holiday Exchanges

Every year, you and your co-workers attempt to organize gift exchanges. Or, maybe you don’t necessarily have a company-wide policy, but typically try to exchange gifts with a few key work pals. You may be looking for unique presents that are appropriate for the work environment. We’re here to help. Today, we’re highlighting eleven brilliant gift ideas suitable for co-workers and staff.

Monthly Subscription Goodies

Consider showing your appreciation for staff by offering monthly subscription deliveries of goodies. You can help boost morale and provide the gift that keeps on giving every month. There are a host of snacking subscriptions available, but check out ThanksCrate.com for some great ideas.

Kitchen Accessories

Dish towels and holiday-themed oven mitts can be great gift ideas. Consider stuffing the mitt with snacks or dry baking mixes. You’re sure to please your cooking enthusiast co-worker and stay within your price point in doing so.

Mugs, Thermals & Travel Cups

You may have employees or work friends who are rarely seen without a beverage in hand. You can offer these folks new mugs or travel cups to put in their usage rotation. Splurge a little and invest in some of the heavy-duty thermal mugs as well.

Graphic Tee Shirts

If there’s a comedian in your circle of staff or any fans of movies and music, you might offer graphic tee shirts or sweatshirts in a favorite genre. Remember to keep it clean and avoid offensive topics. But, finding that ‘new dad’ shirt or Star Wars themed hoodie, might be the best gift they receive.

Winter Wear

If you’re in an area with routine inclement weather, you’re always safe to gift winter-related wearables. Stocking caps, gloves, and ice scrapers are functional and handy gifts that almost anyone will enjoy receiving.

Favorite Candies

You might have that one co-worker who is constantly snacking or has the communal snack drawer from which everyone grazes. Buy a holiday stocking and stuff it full of favorite candies, just for them.

Desktop Accessories

You may work in an office environment with plans to exchange with fellow cubicle or desk masters. There is a variety of fun and unique desktop gifts available. Consider finding fun mousepads, picture frames, or writing utensils.

Technology Gifts

Do you have techie employees or co-workers on your list? Maybe new earbuds, portable chargers, or screen cleaning kits are in order. Depending on your price point or spending agreements, gifting new and cutting edge, tech-related items might be the perfect gift.

Coffees, Teas & Beverages

Coffee and tea lovers always enjoy coffee and tea-related gifts. Visit a specialty shop locally or find new flavors online. Offer the beverages with a new mug or flavorings for a complete package.

Spices, Seasonings & Rubs

If you have a few grill masters in your co-working space, grilling accessories might be perfect gifts. Wrap up new tongs and partner them with a host of spices, rubs, and seasonings. Tuck them all in a fun apron.

Movie Night Bundles

Consider assembling a few holiday movie DVDs, some microwave popcorn, and candy. Gift wrap the entire bundle and present it as the perfect gift. You can stuff it with extras or gourmet popcorn varieties, as well. It’s a gift that sure to please even the pickiest of co-workers.

Don’t fret this year’s gift exchanging. Keep it light, personalized, and fun. If you still find yourself stumped this season, you can always resort to gift cards. Sometimes a movie pass, a card to a favorite local restaurant, or iTunes will be perfectly acceptable. For more tips and ideas for your company gift exchanges, contact us!