Having already given you a few tips on how to choose corporate Christmas gifts, it goes without saying that we also want to explore with you the ways to make your office party eco-friendly too! Keep on reading to find out more about the steps you can take to make your enterprise holiday celebration greener.

 

The Location

This party will be one that all your employees remember, therefore, you want to ensure that it is in a location where all feel welcomed! You can make your life easier, and your party greener, by keeping the office party, well, at the office. This way you have control over your waste in different aspects; you choose the food and drinks you have, can use recyclable or compostable dishes and can opt for reusable decorations.

If you prefer to find a location outside of the office, opt for a restaurant or bistro/bar that is owned locally. You can also contact them and ask them about their eco-friendliness– do they use reusable tablecloths? What about their recycling and composting habits?

 

The Decorations

©Maison Pepin

 

Christmas decorations, although beautiful, often tend to end up either stored somewhere or in the trash. If your business has very little storage space, try to buy versatile decorations. Instead of buying Christmas-themed ones, why not buy white or silver decorations that you can re-use for another celebration? Additionally, having one kind of decoration eliminates the possibility of having too many to store.

However, if you still have no storage space, you can kindly ask your employees to each bring a part of the decorations at home! Who knows, maybe the leftover garland is the missing piece on your employee’s Christmas tree!

You could also organize a team building activity. Many workshops are given during Christmas time, it could be a Christmas wreath or a center piece. You can find these kind of activities at Pepin Shop ou at the new culinary space La Dépendance.

 

The invitations

Although we may enjoy old-fashioned letters beautifully sealed with a delicate red wax spot, these nowadays often end up in the trash. Instead of using paper invitations, send one by email. You can use websites such as Canva  or GreetingsIsland, where you can choose from a variety of pretty templates. Although paper invitations are a nice touch, on a grand scale, those thirty pieces of paper are instantly wasted for no good reason.

 

Food and Drinks

Let’s be honest– often the most exciting part of a Christmas party is the food that comes with it. This year, instead of buying paper plates, why not invest in reusable plates and silverware? To push the eco-friendly side of things, you could also visit thrift shops to find second-hand dishes like Renaissance. If you have no place to store these afterwards, instead ask your employees to each bring their own for the night, or invite your employees to keep the new dishes. Also, to avoid using single-use napkins, invest in tablecloths made out of fabric. Objective, a Montreal-based company, offers different colors of linen tablecloths. If you are worried about having to wash these, just give them to your employees as a small Christmas gift– sneaky, but works like a charm.

©Objective

Talking about food– a potluck is an easy and cheap way to organise the food for the party. As we discussed it in our article on holiday gifts, a potluck is a great way of bringing your team together. Furthermore, as a potluck most likely will take place in your office, you can invite your employees to bring Tupperware to bring back any leftovers; you then avoid wasting and have party food for a few days! Try to encourage your team to use fairtrade and eco-friendly ingredients to create their dish and to bring them in reusable containers, rather than in styrofoam or plastic ones. However, if you are not a big fan of potlucks and prefer ordering from a catering company, the tips given in the location section of this article also apply!

 

Games

The games of the night: some love them, some hate them. Nevertheless, they make the party come alive! To stay on the eco-friendly side, avoid wasteful games and bring back the old fashion ones! A deck of cards can do wonders, and board games you used to play all the time can be a nice walk down memory lane. As Venuelust points it out, the typical “wrapping gifts with oven mittens” is fun, however only wastes perfectly good paper! Opt for something fun, yet environmentally friendly.

 

Gifts and Prizes

Most of the time, games come with prizes. As we explained in our article on corporate objects,  presents have to be carefully chosen or they can be wasteful. How about giving a local and durable product, it could be a ipad sleeve for the geeks or a discovery set of Quebec honey.  In the same line of thought, if you choose to do Secret Santa, encourage your employees to buy something sustainable and eco-responsible!

Cleaning up

The party is over, it’s time to clean up! After hosting a successful eco-friendly office party, don’t ruin your efforts by using toxic washing materials. Use biodegradable cleaning products, or, if you’re super dedicated, make your own using natural products! Buy microfiber, reusable cloths to wipe away the spilt wine, rather than buying paper towels. Lastly, make sure to provide recycling and composting bins that are easy to find.

 

On that note, have a great party!

 

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash