Office party games help break the ice at what could be an otherwise uncomfortable occasion. They encourage people to interact and break up cliques that may form. Because office parties are a business event, the games must be kept appropriate, however, and they should get people moving and interacting without being sexual or offensive in nature. Games like musical chairs, the grouping game, Noah's Ark, and gift exchanges can help coworkers get to know each other.
One of the most popular office party games that get people laughing is musical chairs. The coordinator can set out one fewer chair than there are people and place them in two rows, back to back. She then turns on the music and has the participants walk in a circle around the chairs. When the music stops unexpectedly, everyone races to sit in a chair and the person left standing is out. One chair is removed with each round, and the process is repeated until there is a winner.
If people at the office party aren't mingling, it may be time for the grouping game. This game involves gathering everyone in one big group and calling out a number less than half the number of people present. When the number is called, everyone rushes to gather in a group of that many people. When the number is met, everyone links arms so no one else is let in. Whoever is left standing without the proper group size is out of the game.
The Noah's Ark game is a sure way to break the ice at a professional office party. The coordinator makes two sets of animal cards and passes them out to the participants. The objective of the game is for employees to find their animal mate without talking in the human language. Once two people think they have found their mate, they take their cards, without looking at each others, to the referee. The game continues until everyone has found their mate.
If spouses or significant others are invited to the party, it may be fun to play a game of imitation. The spouse or significant other imitates what he or she thinks his or her partner acts like at work. This game will have people laughing in no time, as long as they have a sense of humor.
Christmas parties are great for having a white elephant gift exchange. Everyone who wants to participate brings a wrapped gift that costs less than $5 US Dollars (USD). The leader places numbers in a hat and has everyone pull one. The person who picks number 1 gets to choose a gift and unwrap it. The person who picks number 2 gets to choose a new gift and unwrap it or steal the first gift. If the first person gets his gift stolen, he gets to pick a new gift and unwrap it, then it is on to number 3.
Games like spin the bottle and truth or dare are not appropriate office party games. They put people in embarrassing situations that can carry over to the workplace. Because it is a work-related event, coworkers may also claim sexual harassment. The games should be kept clean, as the party is a job related function.