Meetings 411: 8 Quick Holiday Season Energizers

Gingerbread House BuildBusiness meetings large and small still take place during the holiday season. It's a great opportunity to add a touch of fun with seasonal energizers. Gift exchanges are great but here are 8 other ideas.

1. Holiday Safari

Divide the group into teams and have them follow holiday themed clues for a quick holiday safari to find the mystery location for your meeting. 

2. Holiday Puzzle Challenge

Divide your group into teams and give them a time limit to assemble holiday puzzles. There is a limit to the amount of time that participants will focus and engage. So unless you're working with a group of puzzle aficionados, keep it simple. The completed puzzles can be donated to a children's charity.

3. Holiday Crackers

Christmas CrackerThey're affordable, quick, easy, and fun. This UK holiday tradition is guaranteed to amp up the energy in you meeting room. Have one cracker per person. In pairs, attendees grab one end of the cracker and pull. A toy surprise (or more expensive gift), hat, and riddle will pop out. Have fun with the riddles. Repeat with the same partners and the rest of the riddles.

4. The Music Box

This is similar to musical chairs.


  1. Purchase a small but substantial gift that guests are going to value (e.g. a mini iPad, a mobile phone).
  2. Assemble boxes of various sizes and a variety of holiday wrapping papers.
  3. Place the item in the first box and wrap it, Place that box in another box and wrap that too.
  4. Keep adding boxes until you have a large box that is not to heavy. For more fun, paste a holiday tag with a holiday riddle or trivia question at the top of each box.


  1. Guests sit in a circle. (For large groups have several circles each with its own box.
  2. Play lively holiday music. (Mix it up have a variety.)
  3. Instead of instead of walking around the chairs while music plays, participants pass the box around.
  4. Every time the music stops, the person who has it gets to unwrap one layer of the package and open a box. (In the version with the riddles, the participant has to answer the riddle correctly for a chance to remove a layer of wrapping paper.)
  5. The person to unwrap the gift gets to keep it.
  6. If you think your group will be into this activity, prepare 2 or 3 gift boxes so that you can play another round or two.

5. Holiday Fireplace (Virtual)

Play this in the background during group exercises to energize the group.

6. Gingerbread House Build

Gingerbread HouseI spotted this at a customer appreciation event at the Hilton Garden Inn Vaughan, north of Toronto, last week. A gingerbread house kit was placed on each table. A table was set up with a variety of candies and decorative elements.

Before lunch, guests to know their table-mates while building a gingerbread house together. This continued over light appetizers. After a Best Gingerbread House contest, the winning table got Ginberbread House kits. One person from each table got to take the house home.

The gingerbread houses could just as easily been auctioned off to raise money for charity.

7. Holiday Basket or Holiday Hamper Challenge

Break the group into teams. Either give each team a budget or have on hands a variety of items to assemble holiday hampers or baskets. Have a contest for the best hamper. Donate the holiday baskets or hampers to a local church or charity that has a distribution program.

8. Holiday Mocktail Mixology Challenge

For daytime meetings, just before lunch, try a classic holiday mocktail mixology challenge or give each team time to come up with a signature holiday mocktail.

If there is a dinner after the meeting, a cocktail mixology class and cocktail mixing challenge is a great transition.

Cvent blog has previously shared some Energizers for Conferences and Meetings. You can modify them for a holidaytheme.

Looking for quick ways to add a festive decor to your meetings? Check out 7 Inspiring Ideas for Christmas Event Decor.

Photo Credits: Christmas Events, Executive Oasis International, Christian Guthier

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