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Avoid the 3 "Stucks" to Throw a Great Company Party

We're coming off a fun weekend, where we helped manage 2 separate events for the Special Olympics 2018 USA Games in Seattle with our friends at Underdog. 

 Nice Bullseye!

Nice Bullseye!

But no matter how great the event, and how amazing the athletes, you see the same 3 party stucks over and over again. 

Maybe we just watch too closely, but see if they sound familiar, especially when you are trying to run a corporate challenge with multiple teams or groups. 

[1] The Logistics Stuck - Where are all the places that you can bottleneck your party before you even get to the fun and games? We have seen this before with coat checks, with buffet lines, and yes even with the stuff people don't like to talk about: the bathrooms!

If your sign-in setup is messed up and under-staffed, or you only have 1 person working the coat check line when 50 people show up at once, your party can quickly get stuck. 

One Xmas Party, we noticed that the double buffet line wasn't really a double line (one on each side of the tables) because of one of the simplest stucks of all: 

The first food dish only had one serving spoon. 

Once we fixed that 1 spoon with the caterer, the line magically started moving. 

Sometimes one big spoon, can impact your whole event.

[2] The Activity Stuck - Normally Drinks on the Links Mini-Golf is the culprit here, because so many people start asking those friend questions and forget to actually play the holes. 

But if you are running an event with multiple activity stations or games that are all inter-dependent, like a Field Day, you really have to make sure one game doesn't stick your whole event. 

When in doubt, cut it down. 

Have a 7 minute station be 5 minutes, because it might take 2 minutes to explain the rules. 

Instead of 6 somewhat filled out teams, have 4 really full teams. 

Have 9 mini-golf holes? That's amazing...but 6 will be fine. 

Don't let 1 game or activity bottle-neck the whole party, especially if the game is "un-timed." You need all of your stations for a Corp Challenge working at the same time. When it doubt, cut it down.  

[3] The Transition Stuck - Perhaps the trickiest and most brutal. Are you trying to form teams or groups after the boss just gave a rousing speech. Are you trying to gather people to hear the speech 2 minutes after the food just got put out and the bar just opened?

Are you trying to move from open play to a semi-final or final for a challenge situation, but you are stuck adding up scores or chasing down score sheets? 

When you try and run a corporate challenge or Olympiad yourself, this is normally the spot where the party can get totally stuck: in the transition from one phase to the next phase. 

Whether or not you use an outside company like FunCorp, make sure you have the ability to move scores to a central tabulator so that you don't get stuck in certain transition phases. 

And when in doubt ... ALWAYS let people eat and drink first before you start talking about rules or forming groups. You will get much better attention from your employees!

So remember the 3 stucks your party can encounter, and plan accordingly. Make sure you watch your logistics bottlenecks, your slowest games and activities, and your transitions, so people aren't standing around waiting on you at your next corporate event.