First off, I apologize for being off for a few weeks. As the main writer for our blog, I take full responsibility for not having back up entries – that’ll be on the New Year’s Resolutions list!
Many offices have had, or will be having, their company holiday party. Due to all the craziness of our recent merger, we pushed ours back to this Friday. Normally, our companies have either had a secret santa or a white elephant game – but with lack luster support of one and the addition of 35 for the other, neither was really working out. But who doesn’t like getting surprise gifts?!? So, with that in mind, I offer up this crazy mash-up of secret santa and white elephant. I’ll make sure to update with how my fellow co-workers feel about this game – there’s an interesting twist thrown in for good measure.
I know it looks long – it’s just broken down. It should only be a 10 – 15 minute game max, depending on the size of your office.
1. Everyone needs to bring in a wrapped gift. For our office, we have a $10 cap and presents can be hand made, baked, regifted, or up to $10. No tags! Creativity on packaging is highly encouraged.
2. Have everyone bring in their gifts early. Once they do, write their name on a slip of paper and put it in an unmarked envelope (they don’t need to know you’re doing this). Have one for every participant.
3. Depending on the size of your office, you may need to separate gifts into different locations of the office. For example, we have 55 people playing this game. To avoid major head injuries, I’ll be putting 7-10 gifts in the different conference areas of the office and then assigning people numbers based on those locations. However, if you have 10 people, you can probably just keep them in one location.
4. If you do need to split up gifts, randomly select the presents to be placed in the different areas. Know how many presents you put in each area, and then assign your coworkers a number. Example, if you have 4 areas in the office the presents are in, count people off 1 – 2 – 3 – 4, with the appropriate amount of presents in each spot.
5. Let them know they have 1 minute to get a present and get back to the waiting area (only from the area assigned). Have them come back and form a circle (as best as possible).
**** if they are not back in a minute, they get to serenade you with your favorite holiday song 🙂
6. As they’re coming back, hand each person one of the envelopes you have pre-sealed. Tell them they can’t open it…it’s a surprise.
7. They’re all back! Tell them to look around – they have 2 minutes if they want to make any trades. If not, they can hang out where they are…just make sure they get back into a circle like form
8. Now that they may or may not have the pretty present they want. Great! They think they’re about to open their gift…but they’re not.
9. Pick a person in the circle to start with – tell them to open the envelope…the name on the card? They have to trade gifts with that person. To avoid confusion, go around the circle clockwise until everyone has opened up their envelopes and traded gifts.
10. Once the last envelope has been open and present grudgingly traded – everyone can open their gifts. Added bonus – have them hold gifts over head for a great photo op 🙂