Are you the one that is in charge of planning your company holiday party? Do you find yourself scrambling at the last minute to make sure everything is in place year after year? If so, you know how stressful that can be! Some of us may even lose sleep worrying about whether everything will work out.

This year you can cut back on the anxiety by planning early. Early planning gives you plenty of time to work out details and make sure you get the venues and vendors you need to make your party a success.

So, even though the kids may have just gone back to school, this can be the perfect time to start thinking about that company party. Here are some reasons why early planning can ensure smoother sailing as the holiday party approaches.

Getting the Venue: The holidays are coming and you’re not the only one planning a holiday party…there are hundreds of companies planning their holiday parties as well! This means that venues are in high demand. In order to get the venue you really want, it’s a good idea to reserve early!

You want to start thinking about your venue and the budget you will have to rent it as early as six months out. At this point, you can begin visiting venues to see which will work best for you. Be sure the venue you choose has the accommodations you need and is conveniently located near to where most of your employees live.

Confirmation should be made two to four months in advance.

Confirming the Date: As the holidays approach, people start getting busy. That’s why it’s a good idea to start letting people know the date you have in mind as far as three months out. Then they can save the date and avoid booking anything that might overlap.

It will also give you plenty of time to change plans if you find that a good portion of your employees won’t be available on the date you have in mind.

Official invitations can be sent out at the two month mark with reminders sent periodically. That way, no one will forget that the party is happening.

Getting the Right Entertainment: Just like your venues, around holiday time, entertainment can get booked up quickly. There’s nothing worse than having a particular entertainer in mind and finding they are booked on the date of your party. Then you might have to settle for subpar entertainment….and no one wants that to happen!

The type of entertainment you have can range from a live band to a magician to a comedian…and the list goes on. It is best to book entertainment right after you have secured your venue, ideally around the 2-4 month mark. Then you can be sure the venue you have chosen will have the accommodations your entertainer needs. You will also be able to give your entertainers details about the location when making arrangements.

Getting the Right Food: Catering companies will also be in high demand around holiday time. Securing a caterer in advance ensures you will have your first choice when it comes to the food you want served at your holiday party. It also gives you plenty of time to review and edit the menu with your vendor.

Reserving your caterer is another detail that should be taken care of well in advance, right around the 2-4 month mark.
Organizing the Smaller Details: Once you have gotten the major details of your party worked out, you will have plenty of time to focus on getting everything else in place. Now you can begin getting supplies for your party, hiring additional staff if necessary, firming up details with your guests and vendors, working out your floor plan and more.

A holiday party is a source of stress and you may want to put off planning for as long as possible. But early planning will keep you from having to scramble to make last minute arrangements and deal with the prospect of not finding the venues, entertainment and catering you need to make your party great.

This year, start planning early so you can have plenty of time to brainstorm, book your preferred venues and vendors, stress less and enjoy your holiday more.