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“I’ll be Home for Christmas”…again

Hosting another year of virtual events

It’s November, and Christmas is just around the corner. Like most, I am both excited and appalled at how quickly the year has flown by.

I think we all had our hopes set high for a return to normal. We all thought by now we would be able to get together with colleagues without the worry of masking, vaccines, limits to organized events, etc.

For many workplaces, Christmas celebrations are the one time a year where staff can let go a little and have fun. This year, the divide is a little bigger, but it doesn’t have to be. Even though the pandemic has had other plans, all we need to do is get creative! If you haven’t had time to give it thought, here are some of our favourite virtual party ideas. If you already have something fun planned, be sure to let us know!

Virtual Pub Quiz

Each employee selects a topic that they find interesting, such as funny Canadian Laws, travel, food around the world, etc. Each staff member writes three questions related to the topic, then creates a three-page PowerPoint (one slide per question).

When it is their turn to ask their questions, they get to take over the screenshare function on teams/zoom to show their presentation to the other staff. For example, you could show a picture of a landmark building and ask employees to where this landmark is found (which country).

While questions are asked, employees are asked to write down what they think is the correct answer. At the end, answers are taken up and points are calculated. Each correct answer, is one point! Prizes can be awarded to the employee(s) who score the most points.

This activity is also a great team building exercise where staff members get to know each other and their interests! You can also pair this activity with some of the others below.

Cookie decorating kits

Ship a cookie decorating kit to each employee’s house. Schedule 1-2 hours to decorate cookies online.

Watch a Christmas movie together

Create a Netflix party or use teleparty or kast to sync screens and send messages to eacht other through a live chat box. Provides a good blend of social and downtime.

Gingerbread house competition

Send each staff member a gingerbread house making kit (or ask them to pick up their own). Spend a few hours decorating your houses together and just chit chatting. When the houses are complete, have employees vote on the houses they think are most creative, look the tastiest, etc.

Ugly Christmas sweaters

Provide each staff member with a sweater in their size. Send them a box full of decorations and while you’re doing your virtual Christmas party, have each staff member make and decorate their ugly Christmas sweater.

Partner with a Local Business or Artisan

Sign making workshops are quite popular, as are making Christmas Centre Pieces. Do you have any local creatives who could offer ideas? Is there a local garden centre who could create boxes of greenery with instructions to make your own wreath? This is a great example of thinking outside the gift box!

Hire a Party Company

A lot of party planning businesses have had to update their business model for the pandemic. There are many companies who offer virtual tours, online games you can do together, and even comedians who offer comedy events, and more.

Take an Online Class

So, you’ve always wanted to learn how to breakdance? Learn a new language? Play the guitar? Go for it! Now is the perfect time to learn. Decide on a topic as a group and find an online class you can all do together.


You don’t need to be on stage to have a live audience! For all of the karaoke enthusiasts out there, you can sing and perform together all you’d like thanks to the magic of cyberspace. Sync up using YouTube, or use a website dedicated to online karaoke and host a virtual karaoke party. You can even amp up your performance and do it in Christmas-themed costume!

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