If you’re thinking of throwing a picnic for staff, suppliers or for business partners, there’s never been a better time of year. The sun is out (most of the time!) and it’s a great way to enjoy some delicious food, while having pleasant conversations and enjoying a bit of fresh air. It’s also the perfect opportunity to show your attendees a little appreciation for their ongoing contribution to the company.
Organising a company picnic is no walk in the park however, and it’s vitally important to be organised and have all your ducks in a row well before the event. So how can you guarantee that your fun, al fresco day out goes ahead without a hitch? Here are a few handy tips.
London is blessed with some wonderful outdoor spaces perfect for picnic and corporate BBQs, so it’s unlikely you’ll have trouble finding a venue. Think about areas in the vicinity of your office (or thereabouts) such as glorious green parks, refreshing waterside grassy knolls or a beautiful private garden filled with flowers. Areas with lots of leafy trees that will provide shade are good for the warmer months.
Don’t forget to look into whether you need to consider permits for some parks and outdoor locations, whether there are good bathroom facilities, bins and plenty of parking. If this all seems a bit daunting, contact one of our friendly events managers and they can take care of all these details and more for you.
Some location ideas to consider in London:
If you're outside of London, maybe you are closer to the coast and are able to enjoy a seaside corporate picnic, or even a national park.
Remember to keep a clear checklist of everything that needs to be organised.
Venue - tick!
See tip #1 for our advice on planning where to picnic. Would it be best to organise close to the office? For the unpredictable British weather it may be a good idea if you have a back up indoor location.
Choose a date and time. Always be mindful of everyone's schedules, and ensure the maximum number of people can attend.
Who will be invited? Will it just be internal guests, or can they invite a plus-one too?
Keep in mind when invitations will be sent out, and how they will be sent!
How much do you have to spend on food, and alcohol?
Do you need to ask the attendees to bring any of their own food or drinks along? For lower budgets, a great way to keep the costs down is to ask guests to bring their own alcohol.
Will you have a theme? A classic is just a British Quintessential Summer Picnic with all the usual food accompaniments.
Take the hassle out of catering by ordering the food prior to the picnic and getting it delivered on the day. Forget running to the supermarket beforehand and carrying armfuls of cheese and dip to the location! It’s best to make sure you have somewhere cool to store meat, cheese, creamy salads and fruit, or alternatively, get everyone to dig in straight away.
Think about items that are easy to eat and don’t require too many utensils. Consider:
Do not forget to cater for all food allergies and special diets your guests may have. Provide vegan burgers, gluten and dairy free options and if people are still concerned, it’s a good idea to label the food so that people know what they can and can’t eat.
Stock your eskies with tonnes of ice and have a wide selection of drinks on offer – enough that you’re certain you won’t run out. Order the drinks alongside the food to make things easier in terms of delivery and keeping everything cool.
Everyone knows that a BBQ isn’t complete without an ice cold beer, but make sure you also include refreshing, non-alcoholic options like:
If you’re really looking to push the boat out, why not organise some cocktails to compliment your surroundings? Pimms is the perfect accompaniment to a sophisticated picnic, as are elegant champagne cocktails and even a light fruity punch.
No, we don’t mean the dreaded egg and spoon race! Think about organising some gentle entertainment, such as a live band or even a special speaker to add an element of surprise to the proceedings.
Bring along a set of boules or a cricket set, so if people are looking to unleash their competitive side, they can.
Some entertainment ideas to consider:
Want to take the headache out of organising a corporate picnic? Let us handle everything for you — Get in touch with the catering experts at EatFirst today, or call us on 020 3890 2200.
A taste of heaven between two buns… that sounds like a burger! According to all sources, it’s unclear exactly why the 26th of August dons the title “National Burger Day”, but let’s not complain about the lack of historical clarity and focus on what’s important on this delicious food day: it’s an excuse to grab a burger!