Feature

Business columns: Why canceling holiday parties is shortsighted

&ldquo;In grim times, eviscerating or canceling the holiday season event could be a blow to already low morale,&rdquo; said Rhymer Rigby in the<strong> </strong><em>Financial Times.</em>

Rhymer Rigby
Financial Times

When corporate profits are lean, “one obvious target for ax-happy cost cutters is the Christmas party,” said Rhymer Rigby. How shortsighted. “In grim times, eviscerating or canceling the holiday season event could be a blow to already low morale.” That’s why a handful of companies is finding imaginative, inexpensive ways to celebrate the holidays this year. Canadian company Kangaroo Media, for instance, is hiring a chef to come to its offices and run a cooking course. The cost is a fraction of what a sit-down dinner at a restaurant would cost, and employees will have a chance to bond over the whisks and mixing bowls. Besides building morale, such events have a serious business purpose, since they “allow disparate workforces to meet in person and build relationships.” But mostly, parties are a good way for management to say thank you. When employees have been plugging away diligently in a downbeat market, says London real estate executive Duncan Walker, “it is even more important to reward people and keep them motivated.” For the good of the firm, then, pop that cork.

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