Ah, happy hour. A time to come together, have a drink, and toast to a good time. For most of us who work full time, happy hour only happens on the weekends, away from our standing desks. But if your goal is to create a more fun and relaxed office culture, all while bonding with your coworkers, then creating an office happy hour is a must. First, let’s rule out a few of the “don’ts” when organizing your office happy hours.
If this is a true office happy hour, then the whole office should be invited, assuming everyone is of legal drinking age. Even if you know that Sue at the stand up desk next to yours does not drink, she can still be included in the fun. As you’ll soon see below, there is more to the office happy hour than just drinking.
Buying a six-pack for 20 people is not a happy hour. That is a disappointing hour. If you are going to do happy hour, do it right. Include wine, beer, maybe even create a signature cocktail for your company. Be sure to have a non-alcoholic drink available for those who may not want to partake in the alcoholic beverages.
Even if you are great about snacking throughout the day at your standing workstation, you still need to provide some snacks for your happy hour. A cheese plate with fruit and crackers is a great start. For a more substantial snack, order in some appetizers from the pub next door. Either way, your guests will be thrilled to have some food to soak up their booze.
Now for the fun part, here are a few ways to make your happy hour more fun than just standing around drinking and making small talk.
Small talk is fine, and can be a great way to get to know people. But happy hour can be way more fun if you include some games. Team up and play a round of trivia with your coworkers while sipping on some beer. If trivia seems a little too heavy after a long work week, then turn your conference room into a game room once a month. Store a ping-pong table in your office and create a tournament among workers. Everyone can have fun while getting a little competitive and cheering each other on.
Take your happy hour away from your standing desks and get outside with everybody. Host a wine and cheese picnic at a nearby park. Is there a trendy new bar on your block that everyone has been wanting to try? Organize your crew to walk together and get a big table on the patio. People tend to relax a little bit more when they are out of the office and away from their standup desks, so taking your happy hour off campus can be a great way to really get to know each other.
Before your first happy hour, make sure everyone in the office knows your company’s expectations of their behavior. Designate drivers or set-up Uber rides for those who need it. If needed, set a limit on how many drinks each person should have by giving everyone in the office a number of “drink tickets” to cash in at the office bar. This keeps everyone safe without ruining the fun.
Offices that host happy hours tend to create a more relaxed and yet productive atmosphere. Standing desks are another way to get the most out of your employees. When you are ready to explore your standing desk options, check out what we have to offer at True North Desks.