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Give your staff more than a meal at Christmastime & see what your brand can feast on

Yes, it’s that time of year again. The annual North American Christmas/holiday party. In reality, it’s an event where emotions range from your people eager to attend to one of avoidance at all costs. Why not change things up this year and surprise your staff with a personal touch (soft values) while strengthening your brand? Yes, you can leverage your marketing muscle during your corporate staff party.

Here’s the idea (i.e. secret marketing strategy):
For smaller organizations, enlist your President or CEO to write a personal note in a holiday card to each staff person thanking that person for their hard work (specific project success, etc…) over the course of this past year. It can be one sentence or one phrase. Either way, the sentiment will show the staff member how s/he is appreciated and viewed as a valued member of the team. For larger businesses, a senior staff person or supervisor can do this.

Your internal staff can be your greatest brand champions. They certainly have all the tools in place to take on this role. Many staff members interact directly with your target audience and a happy staff member is a productive one. Why not nurture these relationships?

Want proof?
Thomas Wright, a researcher and professor of management at Kansas State University, found that when employees have high levels of psychological well-being and job satisfaction, they perform better and are less likely to leave their job, making happiness a valuable tool for maximizing organizational outcomes.

Example (some numbers to back this up):
In a sample of management personnel with average salaries in the $65,000 range, Wright found that being psychologically distressed could cost the organization roughly $75 a week per person in lost productivity. Have 10 employees? That translates to $750 per week in performance variance. Have 100 employees? The numbers are $7,500 per week or $390,000 per year. [source: Kansas State University (2009, February 3). Happy Employees Are Critical For An Organization’s Success, Study Shows. ScienceDaily.

We all know when employees have low levels of well-being and job satisfaction, they are more likely to quit their job. And, employee turnover could be costly.

Now is a perfect time of year to show your ‘soft’ values.

5 Engaging Activities You can include at this year’s Holiday Party:

  1. Trivia contest (each table of staff is a team)
  2. Raffle (examples: future pizza party for dept team, gift of 1-2 extra paid days off, gift card for health-related item/activity)
  3. Scavenger hunt (use of their smart phones, or traditional methods) with items at different tables (could be centrepiece item, getting staff knowledge, etc…)
  4. Passing around a tablet, paper scroll, or other and have each person write what they like most about the organization. This can be compiled and emailed later to all staff (with or without their names).
  5. Set up an area where staff can get photos taken (on a budget: a volunteer staff person handy with a camera). This can be posted later with captions or staff input.

The more you do that can engage your staff, the more potential you create to strengthen your brand’s value.

Infuse Five helps associations and organizations inject smart marketing into their business programs without hiring a full time employee. Learn more about how Infuse Five can help your business, contact Sandra Hamway for a free consultation.



Marketing strategist and founder of Infuse Five Infuse Five, based in Ottawa, Canada, helps businesses and associations, across North America, grow. Focus is on innovative marketing and communications strategies. Ottawa marketing customized to fit your specific business needs.

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