As we enter the holiday season, it’s important to not let revelry and celebration get in the way of your employees’ safety. If you’re planning on hosting any kind of holiday work celebration, COVID-19 prevention should be at the top of your priorities.
With this in mind — as well as the CDC’s official guidelines — we have curated a list of some effective COVID-19 safety tips for your employees and your holiday plans.
Yes, celebrating your holiday party outside is definitely going to be colder, but that’s a small price to pay to keep your employees safe. In some parts of the world, the weather may even be conducive to an outdoor event.
When outside, you don’t have to worry about easier transmission due to being stuck in a more confined indoor space. You can also host a greater attendance outside compared to inside, where both space and government rules limit how many people can attend.
Sanitize and Mask Up
Inside or outside, requiring your employees to mask up is essential. To make things a little more fun, you can provide holiday-themed masks made for everyone.
You should also have an extra supply of these masks lying around your office and events. If people forget their masks, they can simply get another one.
Beyond masks, make hand sanitizer as accessible as possible. Place it around eating areas, around activity areas, outside of bathrooms, and any other high-traffic areas. If your company has COVID-19 stations set up, you can even decorate them with a festive theme.
Reduce Food Sharing
One of the best parts of any holiday party is the meal. After all, a very large majority of employees show up just for the food!
Therefore, you don’t want to disappoint all your employees with a party that lacks food. But options in previous years, such as shared platters sprawled across open tables, aren’t a viable option anymore due to the potential spread of COVID-19.
If you still want to deliver good eats to your employees, you can opt for pre-packaged food options. Should you cater your company event, take advantage of boxed catering options. This way, the only people handling your employees’ food are themselves, minimizing the risk of spread as a result.
Stay Properly Distanced
Whether you’re inside or outside, social distancing rules should still apply. If your holiday celebrations contain group activities, set them up to allow employees to stay six feet apart at all times.
You should also avoid previous holiday favorites like karaoke, as much as it may pain the music lovers on your team! You can certainly minimize spread by swapping out mics between employees, but that still doesn’t change the fact that all of your party’s attendees breathing out as they sing.
Outside of activities, eating arrangements should also accommodate the “six feet apart” rule. You can opt for larger tables if you still want everyone to be able to mingle while they eat. In terms of seating, it’s best to have people not directly face each other if possible. Again, you have a little more leeway if you’re outside, as opposed to inside.
Communicate Your Plan
Regardless of the measures you take to ensure a safe holiday celebration, it’s important to communicate these measures to your staff beforehand. As early as you can, begin using internal communications to demonstrate to employees what’s expected of them come the day of your celebration. As you count down the days, send important reminders and quick push notifications. This way, more people will do their part to keep themselves and everyone around them safe, and fewer people will show up unprepared.
Need professional help improving communication and engagement within your organization? See how backstitch Studio can help you send out timely and engaging messages to your employee population.