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With Halloween upon us, you may be imbuing some frightening celebration traditions for your employees. Office celebrations are a great way to engage employees to build culture, encourages teambuilding, reduces stress and provides a creative avenue for your hard-working employees so, how do you make sure the day is full of treats and not tricks?

Quick Tips:

· Culture and Diversity. Consider your organization’s culture and your approach to diversity, as well as office traditions and customer impact.

· Make it Voluntary. No employee should ever feel pressured to participate in a holiday that requires them, for example, to dress up in a costume or bob for apples. And, even if employees don't dress up, you need to honor the diverse needs and values of all your employees.

· Set a Time Frame. Putting a clear start and end time provides opportunity for employees to have fun while ensuring employees remain productive during the day.

· Provide Guidelines. Refer to your dress code policy so any costumes abide by that policy and don’t cause a negative impact on business. Let them know they should not wear costumes that are inconsistent with your equal employment opportunity or diversity policy, could be considered too scary or violent toward others, are disrespectful, are unsafe, are too political, are offensive toward any particular group of individuals, or are too revealing.

· Offer prizes for best and most festively decorated work area. Enhance the team-building aspects of this competition by encouraging groups of people to work together to decorate their shared work area. Or, have teams pick a specific office location (e.g., lobby, conference room, break room) and each team decorates their area.

· Provide Treats. Along with the usual sweet treats, provide healthy options like apples, pumpkin seeds, etc. Or better yet, let them leave early so they can participate in celebrations with their families.

· Leaders should mingle with the rest of the staff so that when an employee approaches the senior leaders in the future, the contact might not seem so scary.

For more information on how to navigate this or any other area of Human Resources, contact us at 909.477.1062 or visit us online at

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