Team Building After the Pandemic

Businesses are opening their doors and allowing team members to return after many months of working from home. This can be a stressful and intimidating time for many. While your employees have spent most of their time “bonding” over Zoom calls, it may be time to host in person meetings and consider creative ways to let them reconnect in the office setting.

Safety First
Some may be excited to gather again while others are reluctant to congregate in groups as “normal.” Following CDC protocols is essential and will keep everyone safe regardless of where they fall on the pendulum. Keep surfaces clean and sanitary (especially high traffic areas) and notify your employees of all sanitizing procedures. Openly encourage employees who are feeling under the weather to stay home and wait until they are cleared to return. By now many employees are well-equipped to carry on in their home office without missing a beat.

Where to go?
When you are confident that your space is clean, gather your team for some much-needed fun. Or, better yet, take them outside to reconnect! The COVID-19 transmission rate is lower outdoors, so you can carry on with less concern in the sunshine. Plus, it will give your team an energy boost and a change of scenery.

What To Do?
Now is a great time to allow your employees time to get reacquainted with old friends. Time away from their desk  to visit together statistically improves company profitability. Provide a meal and tables with seating at a safe distance and simply let them socialize.

After a meal, let your team play some games! While there will be a time for adult field day to return, for now let us modify the plan. Consider games such as Catchphrase, Pictionary, Charades, Memory, variations of Freeze Tag, or Sardines.  These options are fun, gather people together for some laughs, and can be played at a safe social distance.

How This Will Help Your Business
Team building activities strengthen communication amongst your team. People grow confidence in each other and have the opportunity to identify strengths and weaknesses. This inevitably will help them work productively on projects inside the office.

For more ways team building can help your business, click here.

Wedding Dessert Trends for 2021

Your wedding cake is a staple, right? As dessert tables, mini cakes, and individual sweets are creeping into receptions everywhere, you will be pleased to know that traditional wedding cakes are still a hit. So, before you ditch the baker, here are a few ways you can add to your dessert repertoire and wow your guests with sugar.

Keeping safety in mind.
If you are holding an intimate celebration and contemplating safety guidelines for COVID-19, consider offering your guests small cakes or table cakes to reduce the spread of germs. Families and friends that travel together can sit at reserved tables with an individual “table cake” for sharing.

Another possibility is to offer individually packaged desserts for each guest. This will reduce contact from sharing and can double as a party favor! Cookies, cupcakes, brownies, macaroons, or even a mix of all can be individualized and dispersed after the meal. Be sure to add a personal and creative touch to the wrapping.

Have your cake…and ice cream too.
If you are keeping things traditional, cut and share your cake with an ice cream bar on the side. A few flavor selections are great, but the joy is in the toppings. Whether you set up a toppings bar so guests can help themselves or create grab-and-go options, the bigger the selection the better.

Dessert beverages are a success.
Cookies and cakes will always be a hit, but dessert cocktails are making a comeback! Offer a few options for differing taste palates. Fruity cocktails, chocolate martinis, hot toddies, or cocktails mixed with cinnamon and spice are sure to be a hit! Here are a few cocktail ideas for you to consider.

Keeping Everyone Safe From COVID-19 at Your Wedding

It has been a year since our world changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As things slowly shift to the “new normal” you may be considering how to move forward with your wedding ceremony. Here is some advice as to how you can create a safe environment for you and your guests.

Host an outdoor wedding.
Now that spring it here, there is no excuse! The flowers are in bloom and the air is warm. An outdoor wedding will allow space for a greater number guests with the ability to maintain safe social distancing practices. According to the Mayo Clinic, “When you are outside, fresh air is constantly moving, dispersing these droplets. So, you’re less likely to breathe in enough of the respiratory droplets containing the virus that causes COVID-19 to become infected.” Set up your space by spreading chairs apart at six feet of distance or more. You can allow families or parties from the same household to sit together, which will create a more enjoyable experience for them. Consider pre-reserving clusters of seats for these groups to minimize reshuffling prior to your ceremony.

Wear masks.
Let everyone know in advance that masks are required for attendance. If your guests are uncomfortable in a mask, give them the option to livestream your ceremony. Provide an assortment of new or disposable options at the entrance for those who still show up without a face covering.

Provide Hand Sanitizer Stations.
Purchase large bottles of hand sanitizer and place them in different areas of your wedding space. Feel free to have your bottles monogramed, decorated, or glamorized in any way that seems fun or suits your theme. Although handwashing is the most effective way to reduce the spread of COVID-19, sanitizer stations can prevent unwanted spread through touching contaminated surfaces.

If you are organizing a safe outdoor wedding in your very own backyard, here are some tips to get your planning underway.

 

 

Works Cited

Safe Outdoor Activities During The COVID-19 Pandemic [Blog Post]”.  The Mayo Clinic,
www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/in-depth/safe-activities-during-covid19/art-20489385. Accessed March 14, 2021

How to Have a Safe Wedding During the COVID Pandemic

It has been almost a year since our world changed due to COVID-19. Important events have been put on hold or canceled to keep us safe and healthy. However, we understand that the excitement surrounding your wedding did not change with a national slowdown. Wedding plans may just need to be adjusted or postponed to allow safe social distancing practices. If you are considering ways to still get hitched and keep others healthy, here are some ideas that will allow you to have both.

Go Virtual
Many brides are holding a small, socially distanced wedding with a virtual option for those who are uncomfortable or unable to attend. There are terrific platforms available to allow your guests to sign in and never miss a beat, right from the comfort of their own home. If you choose this path, send a link in advance and inform your virtual guests they may need to download software or an app in advance to participate.  Place your camera at an angle that allows the most coverage of you and the venue.  That way your online guests to capture the full essence of your event.

Stay Small
Whether you add an online option or not, micro-weddings are a safe alternative for in-person weddings. First, include those already in your close circle to eliminate exposure with people you have not seen in a while. You can also ask your guest to get tested prior to your wedding and wear a mask while socially distancing. Weather permitting, take the festivities outdoors and spread out. Open air is a safer alternative to indoor gatherings. A small intimate ceremony can make your nuptials feel romantic and sweet with those you love the most. Here are some ideas for small backyard gatherings if you want to keep things close to home.

Postpone the Celebration
If you have a dream wedding in mind, there is no reason to kiss it goodbye. Instead, consider getting married with just a witness or small gathering of loved ones and host a large event on a later date. This alternative will allow time for wedding venues to re-open at full capacity and people to celebrate without anxiety. If you need tips for sending postponement announcements, click here.