Office Contest Ideas

by T. Connors; Updated September 26, 2017
Co-workers face to face by model building

Office contests are a creative way to engage and encourage the employees of a company. There can be numerous reasons why an office would want to conduct office contests. First, the company may have sales goals it would like to reach. Also, company leaders can build office morale and spirit. With some imagination and creativity, you can plan office contests that meet the goals you set.

Holiday Decorating Contest

Woman in office cubicle decorated for Christmas

Holiday decorating contests are an excellent way to build team morale and spirit. Plan a contest for which employee can decorate their office, cubicle or desk in the most creative fashion. Select a panel of judges so one person is not responsible for the decision. Pick universal holidays like July Fourth or Thanksgiving.

Set ground rules such as the maximum amount of money that can be spent or the boundaries within which employees can place decorations. Work with the manager or owner of the company to have a worthy reward like a paid half-day off or a gift certificate to a local restaurant. Setting a strong reward will encourage many to participate and will also build more team spirit.

Sales Goal Contest

Businessman celebrating

Set four sales goals that your team or managers would like to meet in a certain period of time. This period of time could be a week or a month. Set three levels of sales goals in various increments that each person in your office needs to meet. For each level of sales met, the sales person would get a penny for reaching that goal.

For example, the first tier of sales could be to reach $1,000 and that person would earn one penny. The second tier could be achieving the sales goal of $5,000 and earn two pennies. The third tier may need to reach $8,000 and earn three pennies.

At the end of the contest time period, gather the employees and the pennies they have earned. Have a fish bowl filled with water with a shot glass placed on the bottom. Have each employee try dropping his or her pennies into the fishbowl to get the penny in the shot glass. Whoever gets the most pennies in the shot glass wins a prize.

If there is a tie, have a run-off. Give the two tied employees two pennies to try to get into the shot glass. Keep the game going until one employee gets more pennies into the shot glass. Reward the winning employee with an appropriate prize that fits within your company's budget. Think about rewarding the runner-up with an appropriate second prize.

Charity or Community Contest

Women serving food at soup kitchen

If you want your office engaged in the community or your office is adopting a charity, consider having a charity contest. Not only will your employees have fun in the challenge, but the community will benefit from your generosity, and your company may earn positive press for its efforts. A walk-and-run-a-thon is usually a popular way to increase office spirit. Reward the employee who gets the most donations or pledges for the run with a prize befitting the effort--perhaps a plaque or a paid day off.

General Tips for Office Contests

Profile of four businesspeople celebrating with high fives.

Make sure you give the employees a chance to give input on the goals or rewards for winning. You may also be realistic about the goals you set for your team. If the goals are unachievable, your employees may get frustrated and will be uninterested in your games. Plan on recognizing the winner at the conclusion of the contest by posting a notice of that employee's accomplishment on the company billboard or in the lunch room.

About the Author

Connors, a commercial pilot for the past decade, has traveled all over the world sampling the best from each culture. As a freelance writer for Handmark media, he draws literary inspiration from his years as a top New York city chef and his travels around the world as a pilot.

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