Posted in Charity, Just For Fun
The season of good will is well and truly upon us and Santa’s Little Helpers (AKA Benchmarkers Amy, Jen & Cat) are doing their bit of spreading joy and happiness with a bit of Christmas wrapping (not MC Hammer style) in Eldon Square. Shoppers can have their gifts beautifully wrapped in return for a donation to the Children’s Foundation http://www.thechildrensfoundation.co.uk/contact-us/.
Though the practice of gift giving has a long Christmas history, those gifts being presented in colourful paper and tied up in curls of ribbon is a relatively new practice. While Christmas cards began to be sent in the mid-nineteenth century, it wasn’t until many years later that dressing up presents in finery caught on.
Whether stacked under the tree or presented to a friend, creatively wrapped presents set the tone for the festive season. Here’s Benchmark’s tips for top Christmas wrapping…
- Use damask wallpaper as an alternative to wrapping paper, giving you gift a more luxurious feel
- Create bespoke wrapping paper using festive themed rubber stamps on plain coloured paper
- Cut up last year’s Christmas cards and get glittering for a retro style gift tag
- Wrap your gifts in fabric and ribbon for an eco-friendly wrapping style
- Mix and match crepe and tissue paper with colour coordinates and doily foil for the WOW factor
Remember, anything goes as long as it’s FABULOUS!
Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for 2012
19 December 2011
by Amy Smith
Posted in Just For Fun
It’s that time of year again … bells jingling, trees twinkling, cars freezing… and it’s nearly time for that all-important night out, The Work Christmas Party.
The Work Christmas Party (or WCP if you wish) can be fraught with danger. So we thought we’d put together a few helpful hints and tips for a successful WCP where no one cries, gets fired or throws up in the recycling bin.
- Better start with the nitty gritty: BUDGET. Set your costs early, and use all your contacts to get the best deal. Don’t be afraid to negotiate. As they say in these parts, shy bairns get nowt.
- LOCATION. Venue is key. If you’re a jeans and t-shirt company, don’t organise a seven course, champagne tasting, suited and booted event. Look around the office. What would your staff enjoy? Which leads us nicely on to…
- Don’t organise the do YOU want. It’s a great time of year for team bonding so make sure everyone can get involved.
- Don’t ask too much of people. Christmas is a busy time of year and don’t forget this. The less preparation required of staff, the better.
- It’s not just about DRINKS. Yes, yes, food and drink is important, but it’s not the be-all and end-all. Some people might (shock horror) not drink. Organise activities that are drink-free: a quiz, picking music or a team activity, and you’re sure to get maximum staff enjoyment.
- Know your LIMITS. Set ground rules out early. If it’s one drink in the office, make sure this is adhered to. No one wants to see your Finance Manager slumped in the corner at 16:30.
- RECYCLE. You don’t need to spend a fortune on decorations. Make biscuits for the tree and cut paper chains out of your old appraisals.
- DELEGATE. Give people jobs to make sure everyone feels equal and valued. Just don’t forget to check they’re on the case. You can’t have a WCP without a venue…
- INVITES. Points 1-8 are sorted? Then you’re ready to send out your invites. Keep it simple – time, date, location and importantly, dress-code.
- It’ll be all right on the night. Remember it’s a WORK Christmas Party. It’s probably not the best idea to insult the boss… a faux pas at the WCP could mean a LONG lie in on Monday. Legally, you’re still on work hours and it might be prudent to remember this if your tongue tends to loosen after a couple of mince pies.
Get all of Benchmark’s ten WCP survival tips right, and you’re sure to have a stupendous bash. It’s an important time of year to let your staff know that they are valued. Money might be tight and business slow, but even a group trip to the local pub can cheer staff spirits. Have fun!
With Christmas Love
6 December 2011
by Jennifer Westmoreland