We’re all looking for new, creative ways to celebrate the birthdays of those we love around the office. Why not make it easier on yourself by perusing this curated list of nine great birthday ideas? Where it’s games, breakfast, virtual parties or a one of a kind gift, there’s something here for everybody and of course features many awesome socially distant celebratory ideas!
Table of Contents
Make It a Game
Let’s move things beyond the ordinary! The first step is to play this awesome, fun birthday game.
Let’s Roam cranks the fun dial past eleven and launches your birthday party into the stratosphere. You can celebrate with birthday themed virtual games, trivia, or enjoy some corporate team building based city-wide scavenger hunts! Any of these events are a guaranteed birthday blast. You can even set your own customization options to personalize these events any way you want. 1990’s hip hop? 80’s synth? Is the birthday person a hockey fan? Set up your games and trivia in a way that will ensure each moment is great!
Regardless of which options you go for, challenges and trivia are a way to keep everyone entertained and involved. If you’re worried about social distancing measures, these can easily be accomplished via Zoom!
Host a Birthday Breakfast
This is an easy, tried-and-true way to celebrate anyone’s birthday. We all love breakfast! Why not make your birthday tradition breakfast-based? The birthday person can choose what they want—and the entire office benefits! Set up a bagel station, make some omelettes, order out…whatever you want!
This can be done virtually as well. Simply have everyone whip up a breakfast to enjoy over a Zoom chat, or even better, offer your employees a stipend to order some good eats from their favorite local restaurants! You can even chip in, send some gifts to the birthday person, and watch them enjoy their presents over the video call.
Create a Custom Video
Let’s all get a little more involved. For this birthday event you will need some basic editing skills, so it’s best to establish a team of people who can confidently pull this one off. Trust me, the results are worth it.
We’re going to celebrate the birthday person by crafting a unique, personalized video with contributions by everyone in the office! Let us provide you with an easy formula:
- Come up with a list of silly questions to ask your group (this is functionally better if you ask people that know the birthday person well, like friends and family)
- Record their answers with your phone or camera. This is important! Make sure you conduct the interviews separately so that the answers can be a fun surprise for everyone. You’re going to edit these responses in a funny way.
- Edit the video so that the responses flow well.
- Debut the birthday video during a meeting or Zoom call!
Host a Virtual Party
This one is easy. Even if you’re not together physically you can still celebrate together virtually! Gather your team together for some virtual employee engagement—virtual happy hour, breakfast, lunch, coffee break, games, trivia, scavenger hunt, chat, show and tell, anything! Simply take a few minutes out of your day to sing happy birthday, celebrate the birthday person and show them you care. If possible send a surprise gift or link up with the birthday person’s family to plan some kind of surprise. Just celebrate!
Here’s a celebration for those who are still stuck at the office. The night before the birthday, stay late and decorate their desk with balloons, streamers, signs, gifts, and whatever you want (make sure that it’s fairly easy to clean up and doesn’t occlude their work space)! Leave a birthday note on their desk detailing further surprises throughout the day!
If you want to do this one virtually, consider contacting the birthday person’s family and asking if they’d be interested in decorating their workspace for the day. You could even collect some celebratory decorations and mail them to the person’s house, asking their family to decorate in whatever way they wish. Enjoy the festivities together over Zoom!
A One of a Kind Gift
Face it—we’re all bored with those classic knick-knacks and thoughtless but easy gifts during birthday celebrations or Secret Santas. It’s time to take it a step further.
So, come up with a cool gift idea that will be memorable, useful, fun, and meaningful all at the same time. This can be a pair of shoes they’ve been wanting, tickets to a virtual film or concert event, a book they wouldn’t buy themselves, a special and heartfelt letter from the team, an extra day off, or something they can enjoy with their family. Spend some time thinking about this person and what they want, like, and need. Everyone has something they’ve been dreaming of and it’s not always something expensive or challenging!
If you want to take it above and beyond, have your team make a gift themselves. Personalized projects can be done at a distance—you could do a custom shirt, a DIY project, a celebratory video, and more.
Here are some meaningful birthday gift examples:
- A huge goodie bag of their favorite treats, foods, coffee roasts, or snacks
- A mini collection of plants, succulents or flowers
- Homemade candles
- Homemade decorations
- A good bottle of wine/spirit
- A hard to find CD or film
Custom Gift Baskets
Here’s another way to go above and beyond! Do more than the typical gift card or get-together and go for a fun basket of personalized items. Find out more about the birthday person by asking their friends and family what they like, and put some time and effort into the gifts. The items in the basket can be snacks, candy, drinks, coffee mugs, movies, video games, and more! Really seek to celebrate their personality with this one. You could even have all your team members join in, send you the items, and then put together the basket to ship yourself. Decorate the basket with birthday paraphernalia and send it on its way!
Go With an Alternative Cake
Okay, here me out. The traditional frosting-coated vanilla/chocolate sheet cake monstrosity isn’t exactly everybody’s favorite. It’s been overdone, and during the pandemic many of us have tried to cut back on the sweets and calories. We don’t need an edible cube of refined sugar in order to celebrate the birthday person.
Try some of these instead:
- Vegetable cake: Something for the teammates who are on a health kick. It’s basically a crudité platter disguised as a birthday cake! It’s a silly novelty for sure, but it can be quite satisfying and fun for everyone.
- Pie: Okay, there are cake people and pie people, and we all know pie people. If you know the who’s who of your office then you know the favorites. Pie can often be more of a smash hit than cake, especially if it’s the preferred desert of your birthday person.
- Cobbler: Let’s up the fruit ratio by making something that at least feels healthier than a cake! A delicious cobbler can be an amazing, unexpected alternative to the birthday sheet.
Yummy Lunch or a Sweet Treat
It’s possible to celebrate the birthday person even if you can’t be there to celebrate with them. If possible in your area, send them a yummy lunch or a sweet treat by way of thanks for all their hard work throughout the year. Your birthday person deserves to be celebrated, and a surprise lunch, dinner, or dessert can be just the way to show them how much you care. Make sure you link up with their family in order to find out their favorite local restaurant, bakery or delicatessen that delivers the awesome food they love.
There’s many ways to celebrate the birthday person, and we hope that some of these can help in the festivities. Birthdays shouldn’t be part of the additional pandemic stress; just pick something special that helps your birthday person know how much you care!