Fall is in full swing and with Thanksgiving right around the corner, it’s time to start planning the annual office potluck. If you’ve never thrown an office potluck before, have no fear! Here are some helpful tips to ensure everyone has a great time.

Make Sure Everyone Knows What to Bring

It’s important to solidify who is bringing what early on in your planning process. To avoid the potluck feeling like a chore, have employees who love to cook bring main entree dishes, while those who are a little less comfortable in the kitchen opt for some delicious appetizers or desserts. A great way to keep track of everything is to create a shared document where people can sign up to bring certain dishes.

The same can be done with decorations. If you want your office potluck to feel festive, consider creating a signup sheet for employees to bring in some seasonal decor to enhance the experience.

Plan the Table

Plan ahead of time by placing Post-It Notes where each dish will go on the table, grouping appetizers together, followed by entrees and then desserts. Afterward, add in any decorations, napkins, utensils, and more.

Once the potluck has started, it will be important to identify each dish, highlighting any gluten-free, dairy-free, meat-free, or peanut-free products so those with dietary restrictions won’t have to guess.

For Bigger Teams, Add Place Cards

For those with bigger teams, adding place cards can be a great way for employees in different departments to get to know each other. This is also a great chance for those who do work together on a daily basis to spend some time getting to know each other outside of a professional capacity.

Use it as an Opportunity to Give Thanks

In the spirit of the season, spend some time during the potluck going around and sharing one thing each person is grateful for. This will allow employees to leave the event with a renewed sense of camaraderie.

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