By: Hillary McDaniel, Art Director
It’s that time of year again. While it seems like the whole world is off ice skating, having photogenic hot chocolate dates, and spending every day in long johns, you’re stuck at your desk trying to meet a deadline before Santa comes down the chimney. Last year, my partner and I were new employees, fresh out of undergrad, where we were used to having basically the entire month of December off. While we knew there was work to be done, we also knew that the days leading up to the holidays could also be filled with a little cheer.
Enter our “12 Days of Joy.” We came up with an idea that the 12 days leading up to our week-long holiday could have a little special something each day to brighten up the workplace. Sure, the office is decorated and we always have an annual holiday party, but we wanted to do something extra for everyone in the office. Some of our events last year were very simple, like a cookie exchange and hot cocoa bar, while others were more involved, like our PJs and movie day. One of the best events from last year was a lunch and learn, where we learned about the different holiday traditions our co-workers celebrated. There was a presentation on Hanukkah, St. Lucia’s Day, and some special family traditions that have been passed down through generations, like stirring Christmas pudding for luck and a special Santa doll who has lasted for decades.
However, since last year was the first year we attempted this feat, there were definitely some lessons to be learned. For one thing, taking on 12 days of fun as just a team of two people who also have other responsibilities turned out to be way more stressful than anticipated. So to switch things up this year, each department has taken on the responsibility of managing a different day during the 12 days. We also learned that people don’t necessarily love to get up and give presentations (who would’ve thought?), so we’re trying a new twist on the lunch and learn this year by having a lunch and listen, where we’ll have lunch as an agency and listen to holiday music together.
Overall, this was a hugely successful event last year, and I’m excited to see it into its second year. I hope this continues to be a tradition at Intermark long into the future. This time of year can be so frustrating, as everyone is rushing to get work wrapped up before the year ends, not to mention trying to deck the halls, shop for gifts, and attend every holiday shindig they’ve been invited to. I’m glad we can share a little cheer each day as an agency. While this may not be feasible at every company, I think everyone can do their part to share a little kindness and light with each other this holiday season. Even if you’re stuck at your desk at 7:30 PM with no hot cocoa in sight.