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Host a White Elephant Gift Exchange at the Office

While the thought of a Secret Santa or other gift exchanges might cause angst among certain co-workers, a white elephant gift exchange is certainly something they can get on board with. The main reason? There's no pricey pressure.

We've already shown you how great it is to host a White Elephant Gift Exchange Party at home, but this holiday activity is also a really great way to celebrate the holidays in the office.

White elephant gift exchanges are so popular and fun because they're more about humorous fun than official gifting. In many cases, the goal is to contribute the tackiest, most ridiculous gift imaginable - including those you may have lying around the house!

Check out all the official rules for a White Elephant Gift Exchange, but consider the below tips, too for organizing one at your office.


Holiday Office White Elephant Gift Exchange Tips

Get everyone excited and in the spirit! While it's not an official "party" per say, consider passing out themed invitations to your co-workers. It's a great way to encourage their participation and adds a more definitive festivity to the event.

Schedule the celebration during working hours. Since this is a work celebration, we recommend staging it in the later afternoon during working hours. The holiday season is a busy one for many!

Pass around official rules (just print them out from the above link) to everyone so there's no confusion. Make it clear to participants this is a holiday game about silly gifts.

Set a price limit. If people are buying something, limit it to a $10 price tag. There are plenty of gimmicky gifts out there for less than that!

Be clear on appropriate gifts. We're all adults, but even we sometimes need a reminder to keep it classy in the office. This is a white elephant gift exchange so humor is expected, but steer clear of anything that's going to cause a real rukus. You want this exchange to be festive and fun!

Embellish it a bit. We're not saying you have to go all out with decor, food, drink and music like Michael Scott would, but adding a few additional party touches to the exchange will really liven it up. Get a holiday station up on Pandora and play it in the background and ask everyone to pitch in for a coffee and cookie potluck everyone will enjoy.


This post was sponsored and inspired by Pear Tree Greetings, but the great ideas come from the creative minds of our contributors, not the advertiser. Inspire yourself and visit Pear Tree for unique Christmas cards , wedding invitations and graduation photo invitations.

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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