The Company Holiday Party

Its that time of year when people begin to organize their Christmas and Holiday parties. A lot of entertainers writing blogs about how to pick entertainment and make the event a successful one. Take stock, they say,  of what you think is important and google wisely.  I say leave your livestock alone.

Listen, I can’t tell you what type of entertainment to choose, you may want something interactive orpassive or comedy or serious… but I can offer you this.  Pick entertainment the way you’d buy a car.  Get it from a reputable dealer, don’t buy direct unless you want to inherit someone else’s problem and make sure the entertainer specializes in corporate events.  Funny in a comedy club is not funny in a corporate setting.  If you buy comedy club comedians for your corporate or company event, you’ll get comedy club acts, even though they may say they work corporate.  They do not. It’s VERY rare to find a comedian who works both venues, its generally one or the other. Get the act who devotes their time to the corporate world.   Recipe for disaster to obtain talent from a club if you’re hosting a company event.  Comedy club comics don’t understand the nuances and dynamic of company parties.  The environment is not a comedy club. the inverse is also true, clubs rarely hire corporate comedians for their public shows.
The same goes for magicians, look at their website, if they offer children’s entertainment AND performances for adult corporate events, chances are they’re a kids act trying to make some extra money by doing company parties over “the busy season”.  Its not what you’re looking for. 

Much like buying a sports car at the second hand dealership. If you buy a 3 entertainer show for a thousand dollars and most entertainers quote you on their own are 3 – 5 thousand for a night, it tells you that 3 comics for a thousand is WAY too cheap, you’re not going to get a good product.  Its like saying I have a porsche for sale, it works perfectly, its on sale for 200 bucks.  Sketchy.

No matter how laid back you think your group is, trust me, in 27 years of working corporate events I’ve learned one thing ; ALL company parties demand the BMW, doesn’t matter if YOU think your group would be more comfortable in a minivan.  You don’t want the winter beater of entertainment coming in to entertain you. The beater may be cheaper, and it MIGHT get you there without problems and it looks on the surface like a fine car, it could break down and its just not worth the risk. Risk in this case, to your reputation, and the success of the event.

No one remembers the food at the party, but they sure do remember the entertainment, good or bad.  Lets make sure you get something good.

All the other details of your event can be arranged by that reputable dealer of corporate entertainment I referenced earlier.  I’d be happy to provide you with a list of them.  If that broker of talent is any good at their job they’ll go over the details of set up and sound that make for a spectacular show.  You don’t need me to tell you about that now, that’s for later. If you get a talent broker that just quotes you a price and offers no guidance about how to make that entertainment work at your specific event, RUN, don’t walk away from that agency.  Part of what you’re paying for is guidance.  Hey, you’re working in HR, or maybe you’re even in the entertainment industry but you don’t deal specifically with live speaking talent, bands only perhaps or decor. You don’t buy and set up talent of this type every day, so listen to the advice of the agent, broker or manager.  Trust me, it’ll pay dividends.  I had no idea how to buy a BMW, so when I went to buy one I got advice from a person who specialized in those cars.  Same thing with entertainment. Don’t go to Ford to buy an Audi.

I guess thats it. Go forth and have a great holiday season.

I extend my best to you, and each of your families for the very best of this holiday season.


ppssstt…Hey….Here’s another cold cuppa coffee from The Clash

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