Top 15 team celebration ideas to bring everyone together (2023)

There’s a strong business case to make team celebrations a priority at organizations. Workplace recognition and celebrations help people feel valued and increase their sense of meaning in doing their jobs. But more often than not, recognition takes a backseat simply because everyone already has a lot on their plate.

Fear no more—whether your team works together in person, remotely, or in a hybrid model, this article will guide you through various celebration ideas, small and large.

Table of contents

In-person team celebration ideas

Hybrid workplace recognition events

Virtual celebrations for remote teams

When is a good time to celebrate?

Why celebrate successes as a team?

Take note of these team celebration best practices

(Video) Virtual Team Building Activities [IDEAS FOR REMOTE TEAMS]


Celebrate your employees with these 15 clever initiatives

Solid workplace relationships strongly influence productivity, morale, and wellbeing. Here are some ideas for acknowledging accomplishments and celebrating with your team—however your organization chooses to work.

In-person team celebration ideas

Throughout the pandemic, we’ve been reminded that face-to-face time is simply irreplaceable. Use your office space (or leave it) wisely to bond with your teammates!

1. Annual recognition awards ceremony

Remember the Dundies Awards from The Office? Make it official (or the funniest ever) with an office event dedicated to recognizing star employees. Throw in trophies, thank you speeches, and it’ll be the talk of the year. You can get creative and print out awards for categories like Employee of the Year, Years of Service, Employee leadership, Performance, and Growth.

2. Grab lunch or happy hour together

Try out a new restaurant in your workplace neighborhood! Group celebrations don’t need to be arranged for any specific occasion— quality time can be as simple as grabbing lunch outside, chatting about life, or unwinding after a hectic day.

3. Ask coworkers to share their cultural celebrations

Celebrated holidays differ from culture to culture. Next year, you can encourage individuals or employee groups to organize festivities like Diwali, Chinese New Year, or Cinco de Mayo to immerse in unique customs and traditions. Not only can employees bring their whole selves to work, but it’s also an excellent experience for all participants.

4. Go on a company retreat

I can’t imagine anyone saying no to changing up the work routine for some R&R. It could be intimate and simple with leadership workshops and team-building board games. This sort of team bonding with your coworkers outside of the office can renew inspiration, boost morale, and bring people closer together.

5. Have a retrospective every quarter

Lengthy initiatives are often not celebrated enough; instead, post-project evaluations often focus on just the negatives: unresolved problems, strained relationships, and burnout. Next time you wrap up a company initiative or try out a new process, remember to reflect on the positives as well. Talk about how far you’ve come and celebrate every small win, looking back on the progress you’ve made as a team.

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Hybrid workplace recognition events

Working across time zones or meeting up with your colleagues every now and then? These initiatives work well to increase morale either way.

6. Throw a party for your organization’s anniversary

Bring out the champagne! Milestones don’t come as big as your classic anniversary celebration. It’s the perfect day to blend in recognition, fun, and unity!

For virtual parties, create extra special memories with a whimsical theme and costumes. Even if you’ve got a lot on your plate, don't let this special day slip away.

7. Employee of the month

Who’s the MVP who’s proved to be a helpful team player? From the Oscars to sports recognition, awards are universal symbols of accomplishment. You can stick posters in the office to spotlight these star employees or pin up a notice on your employee intranet.

8. Bonus days off or mental wellness weeks

Surprisingly, non-monetary incentives work wonders for boosting employee engagement. Give your hardworking employees a well-earned break with a simple bonus day off to relax, spend time with family, or just take a break from the pressures of work.

9. Surprise your team with a gift card or event ticket

Let people choose how to treat themselves with an empowering gift card so they can shop from the stores of their choice! Alternatively, bulk buy prepaid vouchers to support struggling local businesses who are recovering from the pandemic. Want to go above and beyond? Buy them tickets to the newest movies, concerts or sporting events in town.

10. Give back to the community

Our environment and communities need our help. Instead of spending money on an extravagant event, why not do a beach clean-up or volunteer as a united team? Days like this can help communicate your company’s purpose and care for the wider society. You don’t even have to physically come together to do this; making a donation or matching your employee’s contributions to a local charity that’s close to their hearts will do the trick.

Virtual celebrations for remote teams

Many remote employees miss the culture and camaraderie that comes along with socializing and celebrating in the office with coworkers. Even though it might be a different experience, you’ll still hear the laughs and see the same smiles. Remember to turn your webcam on!

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11. Relax with a digital game or two

Pictionary, charades, trivia, the options are endless for virtual team celebrations. Guided escape room experiences can be easily set up through video calls and are a great way to relax for those working from home.

12. Do a Shout-out publicly on Linkedin

On top of internal communication, external validation on social media can surface milestones that employees are proud of. Not only will they experience a rush of excitement, but this gesture also elevates their personal brand.

13. Send company swag or a care package for the holidays

Rolled into a single gift, you can ship out tokens of appreciation packed with festive treats, stationery, and other goodies. Customized swag like branded hats help employees feel a powerful sense of group identity and make them proud of the company. Even when you can’t be together, this token of appreciationcan help share meaningful moments and establish a sense of community when they arrive at their doorsteps.

14. Share your employee stories on an org-wide platform

Spotlight individuals for their achievements by granting them celebrity status on your communication channels! You can create a simple Q&A or a full-blown video to post on your intranet or your internal newsletter. Not only do people get to find out what they do, but they also learn about their background and unique stories.

15. Organize a class or workshop that people can take from home

Virtual events with a wellness or crafts focus are increasingly popular for a reason. Through the pandemic, everyone’s been exploring new hobbies like online cooking, yoga, baking, and calligraphy. To take things up a notch, invite a sommelier to conduct a group wine tasting!

When is a good time to celebrate?

Anytime! Whether it’s gratitude offered privately or a coordinated party, make sure to celebrate both big and small wins. An abundance of events and special days can stimulate the inner joy of many achievements or milestones, including:

  • Project completion
  • Work and company anniversaries
  • A new or departing teammate
  • Completing probation
  • Meeting targets and quotas
  • A great customer review
  • A breakthrough quarter
  • Promotions or role changes

Why celebrate successes as a team?

There are many positive outcomes of team celebration. If you don’t already regularly celebrate at work, here’s what might convince you to start now.

Improve productivity with recognition

Did you know that celebrating achievements is an integral part of the productivity cycle? Leaders who take a moment to recognize victories can reinforce what their teams are working towards collectively. It’s a chance to pause and reflect on success and accomplishments during these challenging times.

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Employees are often grateful when leaders take the time to offer a simple “thank you”. Whether it’s in the form of an anniversary party or a Zoom lunch, a culture of gratitude fills the air with unity and camaraderie.

We spend a lot of time at work; let’s enjoy it

Teams who learn and celebrate together take pride in the work they produce and have more fun! This helps foster loyalty and a sense of purpose within the organization. Celebrations are an opportunity for teams to get to know each other outside of work and a great way to bring everyone together from different departments, boosting company morale.

People perform best when they feel confident and comfortable

Feeling appreciated and valued can do tons for self-esteem, uplifting moods, and ultimately affects employee performance. And this kind of recognition helps employees feel more connected to their work. We all know how when we’re personally invested in a cause, we’re more likely to focus and show up at our very best. Knowing that others value you can grant new perspectives on your contributions and encourage you to improve even more.

Take a break to renew motivation

Employee appreciation is fundamental to retaining your top talent. We all understand that sometimes all it takes to rejuvenate is stepping away for a bit. When a big, exhausting project finally ends, it’s always a sweet touch to offer employees a quick break from the daily grind to revitalize that fire for the next one. The last thing we want is burnout after a successful project!

Now that you know why you shouldn’t pause on celebrations this year, now’s the time to implement some positivity!

Take note of these team celebration best practices

Celebrations don’t need to be extravagant and expensive

Notice the little things and choose to reward helpfulness and curiosity. Do you have a teammate who just goes above and beyond to help others? This might be a time to offer a shout-out email or a quick mention during a department meeting. Not everything has to be celebrated on the company cruise!

Thank you for...being specific

Employees regularly want to know that their skills and actions are valued. While small actions may not seem influential to the company’s overall performance, still take the time to praise a team member for the smallest of things—like offering up an idea, proof-reading your article, or locating a file quickly.

Sweet surprise!

What’s better than some unexpected quality time? Carve out some time to cater lunch for the office or offer some extra paid time off as part of a recognition program. Or give them a dedicated career coaching session when they’ve hit their first anniversary. When sending off employees for the holidays, try personalized, handwritten cards with why they’re fantastic.

(Video) 10 Virtual Team Building Activities (that are actually fun!)


Team celebrations might look slightly different nowadays, but they’re arguably more crucial than ever to uphold your culture. You can reap many overlooked benefits like higher engagement, retention, and wellbeing by celebrating your people.

Even though in-person events might be restricted, hopefully you’ll use some of these innovative ways to show your employees why you’re thankful for them. Gratitude is always sweet, especially after a long day (at home or at the office).


Top 15 team celebration ideas to bring everyone together? ›

Celebrating successes at work is important for team building and allows members of an organization to build friendships and positive working relationships with their team members. Celebrations may include activities that promote socializing and teamwork among team members, such as team games.

How do you celebrate team accomplishments? ›

How other companies celebrate their employees‍
  1. A hand-written note or card. ...
  2. A meeting arranged solely to express gratitude.
  3. A company-wide email congratulating the person. ...
  4. A small gift, such as chocolates or baked treats. ...
  5. A shout out on social media. ...
  6. An extra day of paid holiday.

How to do a celebration on Teams? ›

17 virtual team celebration ideas
  1. Recognize victories and professional achievements. ...
  2. Play trivia games. ...
  3. Play virtual board games. ...
  4. Develop a live team timeline. ...
  5. Watch a movie together. ...
  6. Visit a virtual escape room. ...
  7. Host a karaoke or dance party. ...
  8. Create a shout-out list.
Feb 3, 2023

How do I encourage and celebrate team successes with my team? ›

Here are some easy and inexpensive ways to acknowledge your team:
  1. Take a hard-working employee out to lunch.
  2. Cater lunch for the office.
  3. Hand out gift cards for a local coffee or spa.
  4. Print out unique awards for each team member and schedule an awards ceremony.
  5. Offer a special PTO day as an award or recognition.

How do you bring a new team together? ›

4 collaboration skills that bring teams together
  1. Know your team and how they communicate.
  2. Be realistic about timing.
  3. Make room for mistakes (and praise)
  4. Keep in touch.

How do you create an event for a group in a team? ›

Try it!
  1. To create a live event in Teams, select Meetings. ...
  2. At the top of the dialog box, select New meeting > New live event.
  3. Add the meeting title, date and time information, and other details.
  4. In the Invite people to your event group box, add the names of the people who will be presenting and producing the event.

Why is team celebration important? ›

Celebrating successes at work is important for team building and allows members of an organization to build friendships and positive working relationships with their team members. Celebrations may include activities that promote socializing and teamwork among team members, such as team games.

What is an example of celebration? ›

We are celebrating my birthday by going out to dinner. The family gathered to celebrate Christmas. We are celebrating our anniversary next week. They are celebrating the birth of their third child.

How do you encourage a positive team culture? ›

Create a Positive Team Culture
  1. Notice, welcome and include people. ...
  2. Make connections with people and help them connect with others in the organization. ...
  3. Use high expectations to encourage success. ...
  4. Create positive relationships with your team members.

What are the 4 stages of putting a team together? ›

The most commonly used framework for a team's stages of development was developed in the mid-1960s by Bruce W. Tuckman. Although many authors have written variations and enhancements to Tuckman's work, his descriptions of Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing provide a useful framework for looking at your own team.

What are some milestone events? ›

Our life is filled with different milestones, such as starting school, entering adulthood by leaving the parental home and starting work, getting married, having children, retiring… and there are large differences between women and men.

What are milestone activities? ›

An activity is a stage that goes into completing the project. It consists of tasks and subtasks. A milestone is a point in time when a project reaches a major goal. Project milestones are useful for tracking progress, identifying setbacks, and monitoring the budget.

How do you celebrate a small accomplishment? ›

How to celebrate the small wins
  1. take your employees or family out for coffee or dinner.
  2. share a small wins for the week at a team meeting.
  3. do something special for yourself.
  4. buy something you usually wouldn't.
  5. take a day off, or give your employees a day off.
  6. have a sleep in.
  7. write a thank you note to those who helped you.
Mar 15, 2022

What is the best way of celebrating? ›

Here are 12 ways to celebrate you!
  • Take a break. ...
  • Write a gratitude letter—to yourself. ...
  • Unleash your inner child. ...
  • Have a “celebrate us” gathering. ...
  • Give yourself the gift of extra time. ...
  • Give yourself a social media shout out. ...
  • Start a joyful ritual. ...
  • Put some happy in your workspace.
Feb 10, 2015

How do you bring joy to coworkers? ›

7 Things You Must Be Doing To Create A Happy Workplace
  1. 1) Consistently Deliver Praise and Recognition. ...
  2. 2) Make Work Fulfilling. ...
  3. 3) Offer Meaningful Perks. ...
  4. 4) Invest in Your Team's Personal and Professional Growth. ...
  5. 5) Throw Fun Events that Allow People to Interact and Bond. ...
  6. 6) Incentivize Wellness (and Make it Fun)

What is celebration in the workplace? ›

A celebration at work is a designated event for recognizing team member successes and wins. Additionally, a celebration at work doesn't necessarily have to be merit-based. These events can also just be about taking the time to enjoy your employees or coworkers as people.

How do you invite team members to fun activity? ›

Here are some subject line ideas:
  1. Don't miss our next exciting event.
  2. Your special invitation to our team building event.
  3. Have you heard? Special team event soon!
  4. Countdown starts now. Join us at the team event!
  5. Mark your calendar. Our team event is coming.
Sep 26, 2022

How do you make an event creative? ›

How to Design a Creative Event Concept
  1. Make use of innovative design. ...
  2. Provide a holistic approach. ...
  3. Develop the theme of your event. ...
  4. Make the stage construction more appealing and engaging. ...
  5. Generate fully immersive attendee experiences.
Apr 26, 2019

How do you put together a successful event? ›

Table of contents
  1. Define goals and objectives.
  2. Establish a budget.
  3. Build your team.
  4. Pick your venue and date.
  5. Develop event branding.
  6. Plan your program.
  7. Confirm sponsors, exhibitors, and speakers.
  8. Identify and select tech tools.
Jul 29, 2019

Which celebrations are most popular? ›

The Top 10 Biggest Holidays Around the World
  • Christmas.
  • Hanukkah.
  • New Year.
  • Chinese New Year.
  • Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr.
  • Easter.
  • Valentine's Day.
  • Diwali.
Mar 5, 2023

What is the most common celebration? ›

Top 15 Most Celebrated Holidays Around the World
  • Valentine's Day. When: February 14. ...
  • Easter. When: March/April/May. ...
  • Christmas. When: December 25. ...
  • Thanksgiving. When: 4th Thursday in November (U.S.) ...
  • St. Patrick's Day. ...
  • Halloween. When: October 31. ...
  • New Year. When: January 1. ...
  • Chinese New Year.
Feb 28, 2020

What are all three forms of celebrate? ›

V1 V2 V3 V4 V5 Form of Celebrate
Base Form (V1)celebrate
Past Form (V2)celebrated
Past Participle Form (V3)celebrated
s / es/ es (V4)celebrates
'ing' form (V5)celebrating

What are the 5 C's of team-building? ›

A great way to help your team come together is to strive for the five C's, which stand for communication, camaraderie, commitment, confidence and coachability. When you begin working on each of these areas, you will notice significant changes to your teammates and yourself.

What are the big five teamwork activities? ›

They proposed a model for effective teamwork, which they called the “Big Five” model, based on five core components and three supporting mechanisms. The core fac- tors in the “Big Five” model are: team leadership, mutual performance monitoring, backup behaviour, adaptability and team orientation.

What promotes team effectiveness? ›

Employees should have ample opportunities to ask questions, give advice and ask for help when they need it. Use collaborative tools to pass along information, feedback, and updates. Effective teamwork calls for workers to trust one another and bring their individual skills to the table to solve problems.

What makes a strong team culture? ›

A great team culture is one that emphasizes mentorship over management. Cultivating leadership will play an important role in establishing the culture of the team. Communicate clearly with team members so everyone is on the same page.

How do you bring the best out of a team? ›

Top Five Simple Ways to Bring Out the Best in Your Team
  1. Give clear and simple directions. ...
  2. Inspire your team. ...
  3. Identify and utilize each team member's strengths and knowledge. ...
  4. Create a plan for improvement and growth. ...
  5. Praise effort and reward your team.

How do you fix a struggling team? ›

What to Do If Your Team Is Underperforming
  1. Realize you're not in this alone. ...
  2. Accept the feedback with a caveat. ...
  3. Ask for more clarity and support from your manager. ...
  4. Take a fresh look at your leadership style. ...
  5. Co-create a team goal. ...
  6. Think about your future.
Aug 9, 2022

How do you unify a team? ›

4 Ways to Unify Your Team
  1. Share Your Purpose. A football team's ultimate goal is pretty simple: win the game. ...
  2. Be an Open Book. Be open with your team and always share the news, both good and bad. ...
  3. Let Them Eat Cake. Nothing says “Let's unite!” like a free ham sandwich. ...
  4. Be Golden.
Sep 20, 2021

What are the three keys to a successful team? ›

These three key conditions will increase the likelihood of your team's success, regardless of your personality or management style.
  • Define a vision.
  • Align people and their work.
  • Promote action and learning.
Jun 8, 2017

What is the most 3 important things for a team to succeed? ›

Having mutual respect, common and aligned goals, open communication, and patience can all help make for a successful team.

What are 4 four basic elements essential for the success of a team? ›

4 Essential Characteristics of a Successful Team
  • Strong Leadership. ...
  • Common Goals. ...
  • Diversity. ...
  • Trust.
Aug 31, 2015

What is the most important stage in the team-building? ›

This stage of team development is called performing. Reaching the performing stage is a major success and often precipitates some form of team learning.

What are four 4 steps you can take to interact with team members in a positive and professional manner? ›

8 tips on how to best interact with your team members
  • Schedule regular open meetings. ...
  • Use appropriate body language. ...
  • Speak simply. ...
  • Utilize visuals. ...
  • Value every team member's ideas. ...
  • Establish ground rules for the team. ...
  • Encourage debate. ...
  • Show appreciation.

How do you praise team achievements? ›

Having you on the team makes a huge difference.” “You always find a way to get it done – and done well!” “It's really admirable how you always see projects through from conception to completion.” “Thank you for always speaking up in team meetings and providing a unique perspective.”

How do you acknowledge accomplishments of your teammates? ›

Here are three steps to giving credit to your team:
  1. Recognize your team members individually. There's something very powerful about setting time aside to personally thank another individual for playing a role in your success. ...
  2. Honor the team collectively. ...
  3. Praise their contributions publicly.
Mar 11, 2021

How would you celebrate successful completion? ›

How to Celebrate Success
  1. Reflect on your wins. After achieving a goal or completing a big task, always take time to reflect on what you've accomplished. ...
  2. Express gratitude. ...
  3. Organize an activity. ...
  4. Practice self-care.
May 16, 2022

How do you praise a team professionally? ›

Show appreciation when a coworker supports the team with their actions or contributions.
  1. “Thank you for being flexible.”
  2. “We appreciate your reliability.”
  3. “Thank you for providing a unique perspective.”
  4. “Thanks for always bringing great ideas to the table.”
  5. “It's always enjoyable to collaborate with you.”
Feb 16, 2023

How do you appreciate team members? ›

How to show appreciation to your team members
  1. Choose an occasion. The occasion is a moment that prompted you to express appreciation to your team. ...
  2. Address the team by their name. ...
  3. Thank the team for their work. ...
  4. Discuss the effects of their contributions. ...
  5. Reinforce your appreciation.
Feb 28, 2023

What do you say to motivate your team? ›

6 Things You Can Say to Motivate Your Team
  • “Thank you” Showing gratitude to your employees shows them that they're not just another wheel in the cog, but a really important member of the team. ...
  • “What do you think?” ...
  • “That's great!” ...
  • “Can I help?” ...
  • “You'll do great” ...
  • “We” not “I”

How do you share accomplishments without bragging? ›

  1. 1 Take credit for your hard work. Some projects are hard, long, or complex. ...
  2. 2 Be honest about your achievements. ...
  3. 3 Keep your bragging brief. ...
  4. 4 Focus on your tone. ...
  5. 5 Avoid putting yourself down when talking about your work. ...
  6. 6 Show thanks to those who helped you succeed. ...
  7. 7 Act grateful. ...
  8. 8 Avoid humblebragging.
Jul 22, 2022

What are key achievements? ›

It is a result that you personally bring about while fulfilling a particular role. Typically they are things that you created, built, designed, sold or initiated. It is not the same as responsibilities that come under a job description, as these remain fixed no matter who is employed in the post.

How do you express gratitude to teammates? ›

Words of Appreciation from Co-workers or Peers
  1. Having you on the team is a matter of privilege for us. ...
  2. Every single day, you inspire us with your good work. ...
  3. I just wanted to add that you mean a lot as my colleague. ...
  4. Thank you for being a great addition to our team. ...
  5. You mean a lot to our team.
Apr 27, 2023

How do you celebrate big wins? ›

7 ways to celebrate success
  1. Take time for self-care. “Having a great cup of coffee, sitting back and contemplating what I've accomplished. ...
  2. Spend time with loved ones. “I watch my kids with great admiration. ...
  3. Show your appreciation. ...
  4. Get creative. ...
  5. Practice gratitude. ...
  6. Be spontaneous. ...
  7. Use it to fuel you.

Why is celebration important in the workplace? ›

Celebrating team accomplishments and having workplace celebrations gives employees a chance to bond and get to know each other. Personal connections help people work together better. The break from a day to day work day helps to recharge the staff and keep them focused and better able to focus when they return to work.

What is a creative accomplishment? ›

Creative achievement refers to actual real-life creative accomplishments (such as composing a piece of music, making a scientific discovery, or writing a book; cf.

What is a good example of an accomplishment? ›

Examples of quantitative accomplishment statements:

Handled late accounts effectively, securing $5,000 in past-due accounts.” “Gained a reputation for working well on a team, receiving a 'Team Player' award.” “Raised more than $10,000 at annual fundraiser, increasing attendance and media coverage from previous years.”

What are some small accomplishments? ›

30 Life Accomplishments You Want to Remember
  • Moving out of your parents' house.
  • Graduating from high school.
  • Buying your first car.
  • Starting your first job.
  • Learning how to cook an exotic dish.
  • Your first travel experience.
  • Learning how to play an instrument.
  • Running your first marathon.
Jun 28, 2021


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