All you need for an office farewell party is a bit of goodwill and the approval of the person leaving.
These goodbye party events will have varying degrees of formality, and the company may have a structure for this depending on the length of service. For example, office presentation and then a bar-tab for drinks after work, if the leaving person spent some years there.
The person leaving would also have a preference for the type of get-together e.g. low key such as morning tea, or more elaborate like an organised dinner.
There should always be some kind of presentation at the workplace - everyone is already there, it is a more appropriate setting, and people are better-behaved!
Often the person organising the going away party is the closest workmate, and it may be your turn to organise something one day.
Remember, it is only a send-off of a work colleague (not a wedding), so don't go overboard, especially not out of your own pocket.
If you are good friends at work you will see that person again.
So keep it simple.
All you need to do is:
Include all workplace members for a truly positive going away party.
This is not the time for office politics, and making assumptions about whether people should or could attend can make office relationships difficult afterward.
On the same note, don't get in people faces to attend, sign etc. - everyone has their own reasons for non-attendance or non-effort.
It is up to the individual to choose how they voluntarily represent themselves.
Are you having a dinner with a leaving speech? Click for farewell dinner presentation tips.
If you wish, you can make the party more elaborate - click for office party themes.
Other ideas to liven up the office send-off include:
These touches can make a workday really fun.
Remember it is a work event - wherever it is - so keep it clean and good-natured!
Most workplaces would have official procedures for "employee exit", which may include an escort to the carpark to ensure the employee is off the premises, ensuring that the employee hands over their company identification card or swipe-entry card, ensuring that any company tools or equipment are returned. These official procedures, especially if it is an unliked manager that carries them out, can feel awkward and be a real downer after a nice workplace farewell party. The impersonal exit procedures can be a cold shock after the goodwill shown earlier.
This is best mitigated by everyone leaving at the same time - hopefully the person leaving is completing a full day at work, or is leaving at lunch time, so can leave at the same time as other people - with everyone going straight to the next place to have lunch or drinks after work with said leaver. That way, everybody is escorting the leaver and the nice goodwill vibe is carried onward to the bar or cafe.
If the person leaving has chosen a less popular exit time, hopefully there are one or two people who can "help with the boxes" (show the leaver out) with the manager, and hopefully the banter will make the procedure less awkward. The manager could help with the boxes and parade through the building pretending to leave and that the leaver is escorting the manager instead, just for a laugh.
If nobody can "help with the boxes" during the walk to the carpark, maybe the leaver's car can have flyers, placed under the windscreen wipers, wishing the person well and to enjoy the drive to freedom (and sorry for the awkward exit procedure!).
Of course, none of this is may be necessary if the person leaving is moving to another branch location for the company. There may be no need for an escort or handing in the identification card. Then the actual exit is much less awkward, less official and more casual.
What else do you need to organise?
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