At home, you probably celebrate birthdays with cake, presents, and a good meal. But are the same celebrations appropriate for the workplace? Here’s a quick guide on how you should approach birthdays when you’re at work.
Get Everyone to Sign a Card
Cards are a great way to show your appreciation and well wishes to the lucky birthday worker. However, a single person does not require 20 cards sent from every person in the department. Instead, keep things simple by buying one card and having everyone in the department sign it. That way, the employee can still get happy notes from everyone without having an endless sea of paper on their desk.
Keep Celebrations Short and Contained
At home, you’d probably love the birthday celebration to continue all day, but at work? You have pressing things to get to. Having to attend a three-hour party can be a bit cumbersome if you’re on a deadline. Instead, keep celebrations to about 15 minutes — just enough time for everyone to get their cake and sing happy birthday. If you do plan on having a longer celebration, keep it contained to a single part of the office, so those who are busy won’t be disturbed.
Have a Monthly Event
While you want everyone to feel respected and appreciated, having a separate birthday celebration for every person in the office can get a little tedious. To prevent daily cake rations, consider having a once-a-month celebration for everyone whose birthday falls in that range. Get each birthday worker a party hat and small gift to make them feel valued.
Make Parties Personal
Having the same old cake from the same old bakery for every birthday gets boring, so why not give your workers a chance to personalize their celebration? Send out a survey to those with birthdays for the month and see what theme or food they’d like to incorporate into the party. While you might not be able to include everyone’s suggestions, it will at least provide some variety from month to month.
Don’t let your next workplace birthday celebration be mundane. Consider these tips to make birthdays exciting without taking away from productivity.
Boogaard, Kat. “4 Tips to Transform Office Birthdays From Hassle to Happy.” OfficeNinjas, https://officeninjas.com/office-birthday-parties/.
Gottsman, Diane. “Ask the Etiquette Expert: Office Birthday Celebrations.” HuffPost, Oath Inc, 30 July 2015, https://www.huffingtonpost.com/diane-gottsman/ask-the-etiquette-expert-_5_b_7904028.html.