An office birthday celebration is deceptively simple. While it might seem like an innocuous gathering of colleagues, it’s actually a valuable opportunity to enhance and improve your company culture. Honoring your employees’ life moments shows care and appreciation; even small celebrations can boost morale, engagement, and productivity.

Ideas for your next office birthday celebration

The best office celebrations are tailored to the individual. Some people love to be the center of attention at a boisterous party; others prefer a private acknowledgment. Use these birthday ideas as a jumping-off point, and adjust each one to suit the employee’s temperament and preferences.

1. Birthday treasure chest

At the beginning of the year, fill a chest with a selection of gifts that have roughly the same value. Choose items that are useful to everyone, such as high-end water bottles, cozy blankets, or gourmet snacks. On each employee’s birthday, celebrate by letting them pick one thing from the box.

A treasure chest is all about anticipation; the whole team will look forward to finding out what each person gets. To keep the mystery alive, replenish the supply periodically.

2. Special birthday privileges

Celebrate an employee’s birthday by giving them special privileges for the day. The secret? Choose something the person will love. If they’re a dedicated dog parent, allow them to bring their pet to work. If they dread the walk from the parking lot, give them the company president’s prime parking space.

Other fun birthday perks include:

  • Working from the CEO’s office
  • Leading the all-hands meeting
  • Choosing the coffee for the day

3. Give a gift

Employees don’t expect to receive presents from their employers, but it’s always a nice surprise. Your company benefits, too—one survey found 80.8% of workers surveyed that gift-giving would increase workplace morale. Just make sure to strike a careful balance; the item should be tailored to the employee without being overly personal. Some office-appropriate items include:

  • Company swag
  • Gift card to the employee’s favorite restaurant
  • Tickets to an event

To get the whole team in on the fun, choose the gift as a group. Set a budget, and spend time gathering and evaluating ideas in a group chat or email chain. The enthusiasm and anticipation will bond your employees, and the final result will be even more exciting for the recipient.

4. Video greetings

Does your company have remote employees? It can be challenging to create a meaningful birthday celebration from afar. Instead of a message on the team chat, make a fun video. Ask each team member to record a special greeting, and cut it together into a single file. You can offer heartfelt sentiments if it feels appropriate; alternatively, consider making a team music video, a funny skit, or a compilation of hilarious wishes.

If the team gives their permission and the content is appropriate, post the video on the company’s social media profiles. Public recognition makes the employee feel special, and the personal nature humanizes your brand.

5. Team birthday lunch

A team lunch is an opportunity to dig into delicious foods while bonding as a group. You can head out to a restaurant or, to make the most of the lunch hour, order food for delivery. That way, employees will have more time to hang out and relax. No matter which option you choose, remember there are two keys to a successful birthday lunch: Allow the person with the birthday to choose the meal, and surprise them with an indulgent dessert.

Whether you’re hosting a company-wide office birthday celebration or a casual lunch with the boss, food is an instant upgrade. Grubhub Corporate Accounts can help you streamline the planning process. Choose the food and schedule delivery at your leisure—that way, you can relax and enjoy the event on the big day. To see how it works, get started today.