Company Holiday Parties Make a Strong Comeback

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“At mom-and-pops and at the major corporations, parities sort of disappeared when the economy collapsed a few years ago,” he said. “The mom-and-pops didn’t have the money; the corporations didn’t want to be seen as spending. Both are back now, strongly at both ends of the spectrum.”

Ostroff helps companies plan their holiday parties by booking entertainment such as DJ’s and live bands, which he said took a hit when the economy weakened.

This year one of his clients is taking great measures to get into the holiday spirit.

“It’s an event being held at a casino. There’s a great dinner and a dance party, then everybody’s staying overnight. They’ll give cash prizes at the door-a couple of $1,000s and some $500s,” said Ostroff.

However, there are companies that are cutting back on their holiday party spending by using in-house event planning services and having their parties at restaurants rather than lavish locations.

New York party planner Linda Kaye said many companies are swapping holiday parties for team building exercises. She believes the exchange ultimately serves a company’s core purpose: “To bring your firm together in a very positive and creative way.”

Kaye said that several New York companies are uniting to raise money and provide relief to Hurricane Sandy victims.

She finds that rich people within her clientele are willing to spend more money on events such as company parties, birthdays and children’s parties.

“There was a period when everyone was holding back, no matter how much money they had.” Each day’s news brought new reason to worry about the economy or the stock market. Now, things seem to have leveled off,” said Kaye.

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