15 Office Birthday Ideas to Celebrate Employees (2022)

HR

Annie Shapiro 04.01.22

Celebrating employee birthdays never gets old. Between the confetti, balloons, and cake, office birthday parties offer employees a brief respite from their day-to-day, not to mention an opportunity to appreciate peers.


With early autumn accounting for the majority of birthdays—Namely’s database shows that September 14 is the most popular birthday date—what better time to unwrap how companies are celebrating? We asked professionals across different industries how they celebrated birthdays in the office:

(Video) How to Celebrate Employee Birthdays in the Workplace? by #SamMoments

1. Enjoy a Team Lunch

“We celebrate each employee’s birthday with lunch at the office (from the place of their choice) and dessert. We decorate the conference room and give the honoree a birthday card signed by everyone in the office. During lunch, we talk about the honoree’s birthday plans and enjoy each other’s company.”

— Vladimir Gendelman, Company Folders


2. Remember Remote Workers

“Each month, our offices have monthly birthday parties to celebrate those who had a birthday that month. However, we also have a number of home-based workers who we aren’t able to celebrate in the office. We do something extra special for them to ensure they know they are loved and made to feel special on their birthday. Each of our home-based employees is sent a custom mug with a hand-illustrated portrait and card wishing them a happy birthday. While we know it’s not the same as being able to celebrate their special day with others, we hope it makes them feel a little more part of our Inuvo family.”

— Amanda Hughes Propst, Inuvo


3. Recognize Employees at All-Hands

“Our company has a monthly all-hands meeting in our common area. We go over exciting things happening, have a different department present what they’re working on, and [cover] the usual housekeeping stuff. At the end of each meeting, our CEO reads off a list of everyone with a birthday that month and has them come to the front of the room. As a group they’re sung to and everyone enjoys some kind of company-provided treat. With 130+ employees, we’re just big enough to keep it fun and still make sure it’s a little awkward for those being sung to.”

— Heather Mercier, ExpertVoice

4. Be Creative

“I like to surprise my contractors with something creative...The latest present [I gave] was a spa package for one of my writers. She’s a mom that works from home, and I thought she could use some me time. It really meant a lot to her that I made the extra effort to think of something she might like. With so many options online, there's really no excuse. Nowadays, you can send a SendOutCard, a gift basket, flowers, movie passes, even legendary pizza from Chicago or New York (I'm planning on doing that this Christmas)...it's really endless.”

James Heidebrecht, Policy Architects

(Video) How to celebrate employee birthdays and other workplace occasions


5. Give Extra Time-Off

"At our digital marketing agency, birthdays are acknowledged by giving a free day of paid vacation within your birthday month. Although the office doesn't do a group event or celebration, it enables our staff to spend their birthday doing whatever they like most!"

— Christine Kilbride,Majux Marketing


6. Go for the Gifs

“At Aceable, one team member will realize it's another team members birthday and will call it out in a Slack channel. Then, all employees will proceed to share a birthday or celebration themed gif based on the birthday honoree's personal likes and interests (or just the weirdest gif we can find).”

— Amanda Hagley, Aceable


7. Host a Cake Day

At Trupanion, there are more than 500 employees (not to mention 300 dogs and a few brave cats that come into the office). With so many team members, we celebrate employee birthdays once a month with a highly anticipated Cake Day. Imagine, once a month a lunchroom is filled with 20-30 cakes of all shapes, sizes and varieties – carrot cake, ice cream cake, chocolate cake, cheesecake, fudge cake, Boston cream pie, coconut cake and more. We also make sure to have a few vegan cakes on hand!

We also list all the employees who have birthdays during that particular month in a company-wide email so if people spot them they can give them a birthday high five as they go grab a piece of cake.”

— Michael Nank, Trupanion


8. Personalize a Thoughtful Note

“At Blueboard, we love recognizing top employees, so we make a big deal out of birthdays and anniversaries. Because we're still a growing company (~50 employees), we have the ability make each one personalized. Volunteer Culture Crews across our main offices are tasked with gathering submissions for a shared Kudoboard, dedicated to the birthday guy or gal (an interactive birthday card where anyone can post notes, videos, gifs, or photos), as well as organize a gathering break centered around the employee's favorite food or snack. We'll unveil the Kudoboard as we gather to sing happy birthday, and give the employee time to read through the wall of notes.

(Video) BIRTHDAY celebration videography..# my office # my people # celebration with office staff...

— Morgan Chaney, Blueboard


9. Offer a Birthday Breakfast

“Our birthday tradition is largely breakfast-based. The birthday boy or girl gets to choose what they want for breakfast and the whole office benefits. This usually takes the form of bagels or donuts—though I don't think there is a requirement that the food be round and holey. If that wasn't enough, someone usually queues up the heavy metal happy birthday song unique to the name of the special person for the Sonos.”

— Sean Flannigan, coolblueweb


10. Give a Customizable Gift

“Our birthday tradition is two-fold! On our birthday the entire team goes out to lunch at the restaurant of our choice! The second part (my favorite) is a $150 credit towards shoes. Last month for my birthday I got to design some custom Nike's that I'd been eyeing for months.”

— Devin Stagg, Pupford


11. Involve Senior Management

“We like to make our employees feel special on their birthdays by sending a personalized birthday card. For each employee, a member of our senior management writes a personalized note—either the CEO, COO or CTO—to indicate how important they are to the team. The rest of the team in the office signs as well.”

— Lindsay Lutz, TenantBase

12. Decorate Desks

"Our team members celebrate birthdays in the office by decorating desks for the occasion. They cover the computer screens with taped on, cut out memes, add a 'happy birthday!' banner, and include fun accessories like flowers and little sweet treats all around their keypads."

(Video) Birthday celebration with office staff

— Deborah Sweeney, MyCorporation.com

13. Other Local Treats

The day before the employee’s birthday, we order cookies from a legendary local cookie chain here in Austin called Tiff’s Treats. It’s something everyone in the office looks forward to and is a fun way to celebrate birthdays with a really awesome local treat to break up the day in the middle of the afternoon.”

— Kris Hughes, ProjectManager.com

14. Group Birthdays by Month

“When we were small, celebrating birthdays was pretty easy, but as we grew we had to figure out a scalable way to recognize everybody. I got an idea from reading the book Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg—she talks about how at Facebook, as they scaled, the company adopted a monthly birthday party with a sheet cake with a square with everybody’s name on it. We started doing that this year, and it’s turned out to be a great way to recognize everybody on their birthday month—without wearing everybody out with multiple birthday parties every day.”

— Zach Hendrix, GreenPal


15. Make a Charitable Donation

“At GoodHire, each location has its own traditions, but celebration and recognition are important. At the Bay Area office, we have a monthly celebration of birthdays and anniversaries with cake and snacks. We also decorate the team members’ workspace on their birthday (and anniversary) with balloons and such, and they receive a greeting card and a small donation to a charity they support.”

— Marielle Smith, GoodHire


And if those fifteen ideas don’t inspire you, one of our favorite traditions comes from across the pond—Alistair Dodds of Smoking Chili Media in the UK shared that every company he’s worked for flips the equation: “It's always up to the employee whose birthday it is to bring in cakes for the rest of the office! I've always found it rather bemusing, but it’s what employees and the team expect, so I'm happy to go along with it… ‘Happy birthday! Now where's our cake?!!’”

(Video) Automate Employees' Birthday and Work Anniversary with Microsoft Power Automate


Want to easily track employee birthdays on your own? Namely’s HR software allows teams to easily track and celebrate important milestones like work anniversaries and birthdays. See it in action by watching our product video here.

FAQs

Why is it important to celebrate employee birthdays? ›

A morale-booster

Seeking joy and finding reasons to celebrate, such as a birthday, also has the valuable business benefit of increasing morale. It makes people feel appreciated and brings staff together, both of which help to form deeper relationships between team members and across the organisation.

How can you make employees fun at work? ›

Tips on how to make the workplace fun
  1. Allow for flextime. ...
  2. Schedule exercise breaks. ...
  3. Cultivate fun. ...
  4. Lead with laughter. ...
  5. Encourage mini time-outs. ...
  6. Find the humor in negative situations. ...
  7. Create a fun squad. ...
  8. Acknowledge anniversaries.

Why is it important to celebrate your employees? ›

Celebrating team accomplishments and having workplace celebrations gives employees a chance to bond and get to know each other. Personal connections help people work together better. The break from a day to day work day helps to recharge the staff and keep them focused and better able to focus when they return to work.

What is the best quotes for birthday? ›

Short & Sweet Birthday Messages
  • “Hope all your birthday wishes come true!”
  • “It's your special day — get out there and celebrate!”
  • “Wishing you the biggest slice of happy today.”
  • “I hope your celebration gives you many happy memories!”
  • “Our age is merely the number of years the world has been enjoying us!”
7 Jan 2022

How do I start a birthday club at work? ›

Work Birthday Clubs

Organize a birthday club for your co-workers. Ask twenty people to contribute $25 per person. The fee will go toward providing a cake and office party (during the lunch break, of course) once a month. Get co-workers to sign a birthday card for each birthday person during each month.

What can I do instead of a birthday party? ›

Suggest some of these ideas to your child (or brainstorm your own non-party activities) for a fun and memorable birthday.
  • Go Camping. ...
  • Fly Somewhere for the Weekend. ...
  • Take in a Movie. ...
  • Host a Family Dinner. ...
  • Let Your Child Decide. ...
  • Hit the Skating Rink. ...
  • Go to a Sporting Venue. ...
  • Play at the Amusement Park.
26 Jan 2022

Should employers celebrate birthdays? ›

Even though not unlawful, some employees may feel that announcing their birthday is a violation of their privacy when this information is taken from their employee records. To smooth over this potential employee relations issue, an employee's birthday information should not be used without the employee's permission.

What are examples of recognition for employees in the workplace? ›

But while some of these next ideas might sound quite basic, do not underestimate how effective they can be.
  • Say thanks more often. ...
  • Give sincere compliments. ...
  • Send a “thank you” card. ...
  • Provide a pad of sticky notes. ...
  • Have a company thanks feed. ...
  • Store gift cards. ...
  • Company “town hall” meetings. ...
  • Award certificates.
11 Sept 2020

How do you celebrate someone? ›

Celebrate your family
  1. In the middle of the day, text your husband with a song lyric that reminds you of him.
  2. Surprise your child with their favorite breakfast on a school morning.
  3. Call a family member you grew up with and remind them of a fun time you had together as children.
  4. Plan a Family Day of Fun.

How can I make my office life exciting? ›

For new ideas to heighten enthusiasm in your organization, here are 26 ways you can make work fun:
  1. Organize an office sports team. ...
  2. Build a game room. ...
  3. Design a workplace vision board. ...
  4. Decorate the office space. ...
  5. Share jokes with your coworkers. ...
  6. Create an office book club. ...
  7. Start an office band. ...
  8. Gather after work hours.
26 Apr 2021

How do I make my staff happy? ›

How to Keep Employees Happy—and Productive
  1. Prioritize Work-Life Balance. ...
  2. Allow Flexible Working Schedules. ...
  3. Listen to Your Employees. ...
  4. Create Career Mobility. ...
  5. Build a Positive Work Environment. ...
  6. Recognize Employees for Their Hard Work—and Reward Them. ...
  7. Offer Extensive Benefits. ...
  8. Encourage Breaks.

How do you celebrate your team? ›

Next steps for celebrating success on your team
  1. Take a hard-working employee out to lunch.
  2. Cater lunch for the office.
  3. Hand out gift cards for a local coffee or spa.
  4. Print out unique awards for each team member and schedule an awards ceremony.
  5. Offer a special PTO day as an award or recognition.

How do you celebrate a coworker? ›

11 Ways to Celebrate your Coworkers
  1. Just Celebrate it in the moment. Say It!
  2. Shout It Out to the Team.
  3. Send a Celebration Email.
  4. Post the Celebration on Social Media.
  5. Celebrate with Snacks and Candy.
  6. Decorate their Workspace.
  7. Order Lunch to Celebrate.
  8. Surprise Coffee Break.
25 Jun 2019

How do you say nice celebration? ›

  1. jamboree,
  2. jollification,
  3. jollity.
  4. [British],
  5. merriment,
  6. merrymaking,
  7. rejoicing,
  8. revel,

How do you celebrate small wins? ›

How to celebrate your small wins
  1. Keep a journal of small wins. Perhaps the easiest way to highlight your small wins is to keep track of them, so they don't float by without any recognition. ...
  2. Tell a friend. It's okay to be proud of progress! ...
  3. Treat yourself.
29 Dec 2021

What is the benefit of celebrating? ›

People who take time to reflect on — and celebrate — their successes are generally more optimistic, take better care of themselves and tend to be less stressed. Celebrations increase people's sense of well-being, regardless of socioeconomic factors, education, age or gender.

What is the best short message for birthday? ›

Short & Sweet Happy Birthday Messages
  • Hope all your birthday wishes come true.
  • You bring light and love into my life. ...
  • Forget the past; look forward to the future, for the best things are yet to come.
  • Life is a journey. ...
  • Happy birthday! ...
  • You have to get older, but you don't have to grow up.
  • Happy moments.
30 Nov 2021

How do you say happy birthday in unique style? ›

How to Say Happy Birthday 50 Different Ways
  1. You sustained one more year. ...
  2. I wish you a happier birthday than anyone else has wished you.
  3. Didn't we just celebrate this like a year ago?
  4. You sustained one more year. ...
  5. Don't count the candles, enjoy your day.
  6. Happy you day.
  7. Age is just a number.
  8. I'm glad you were born.
20 Sept 2022

How do you celebrate your hard work at office? ›

22 ideas for how to celebrate wins at work
  1. Have a lunch. ...
  2. CEO or management praise. ...
  3. Private praise. ...
  4. Decorate. ...
  5. Throw a party. ...
  6. Gift or take PTO. ...
  7. Spotlight during meetings. ...
  8. Financial bonus.
15 Feb 2021

Should employers celebrate birthdays? ›

Even though not unlawful, some employees may feel that announcing their birthday is a violation of their privacy when this information is taken from their employee records. To smooth over this potential employee relations issue, an employee's birthday information should not be used without the employee's permission.

How do you celebrate someone's birthday? ›

Here are 5 creative ways you can celebrate someone's birthday, even if you still can't be there in person.
  1. Order a home-delivered birthday meal. ...
  2. Schedule a happy-birthday singalong via video call. ...
  3. Organise a virtual cake-baking party. ...
  4. Buy the gift of health. ...
  5. Send a care pack full of their favourite things.
7 Apr 2020

What are examples of recognition for employees in the workplace? ›

But while some of these next ideas might sound quite basic, do not underestimate how effective they can be.
  • Say thanks more often. ...
  • Give sincere compliments. ...
  • Send a “thank you” card. ...
  • Provide a pad of sticky notes. ...
  • Have a company thanks feed. ...
  • Store gift cards. ...
  • Company “town hall” meetings. ...
  • Award certificates.
11 Sept 2020

Why is it important to celebrate your employees? ›

Celebrating team accomplishments and having workplace celebrations gives employees a chance to bond and get to know each other. Personal connections help people work together better. The break from a day to day work day helps to recharge the staff and keep them focused and better able to focus when they return to work.

How do you celebrate someone? ›

Celebrate your family
  1. In the middle of the day, text your husband with a song lyric that reminds you of him.
  2. Surprise your child with their favorite breakfast on a school morning.
  3. Call a family member you grew up with and remind them of a fun time you had together as children.
  4. Plan a Family Day of Fun.

What is the benefit of celebration? ›

People who take time to reflect on — and celebrate — their successes are generally more optimistic, take better care of themselves and tend to be less stressed. Celebrations increase people's sense of well-being, regardless of socioeconomic factors, education, age or gender.

What is the best message for birthday? ›

Short & Sweet Birthday Messages
  • “The day is all yours — have fun!”
  • “Happy birthday to my ride or die. ...
  • “Thinking of you on your birthday and wishing you everything happy.”
  • “Best wishes on your birthday – may you have many, many more.”
  • “Cheers to you for another trip around the sun!”
  • “Today is about you. ...
  • “Happy birthday!
7 Jan 2022

What is a good quote for a birthday? ›

Short & Sweet Happy Birthday Messages
  • Hope all your birthday wishes come true.
  • You bring light and love into my life. ...
  • Forget the past; look forward to the future, for the best things are yet to come.
  • Life is a journey. ...
  • Happy birthday! ...
  • You have to get older, but you don't have to grow up.
  • Happy moments.
30 Nov 2021

What is the sentence of celebrate? ›

Examples of celebrate in a Sentence

We are celebrating my birthday by going out to dinner. The family gathered to celebrate Christmas. We are celebrating our anniversary next week. They are celebrating the birth of their third child.

How do you make someone feel special on their birthday quotes? ›

Birthday Wishes
  • Wishing you tons of happiness and blessings on your birthday. May your cake be as sweet as you and your gifts bring you smiles. Blessed birthday to you!
  • Having a friend like you makes my life so much more special. I am blessed to you have you next to me always. Have a wonderful birthday!
26 May 2020

How do you reward employees for well done? ›

Here are 9 low-cost ways to reward employees:
  1. Express thanks with a public thank you. ...
  2. Give a hand-written note. ...
  3. Offer time off. ...
  4. Give small gifts. ...
  5. Cover commuting costs. ...
  6. Offer chair massages. ...
  7. Feature top employees on your company blog or newsletter. ...
  8. Schedule an all-company activity.

Videos

1. Office Break Yoga | 14 Min. Yoga Practice | Yoga With Adriene
(Yoga With Adriene)
2. BOSS Birthday Celebration| CEO Birthday Party Celebration with Employees | Mayank Sir Birthday Bash
(Distributors Channel - Bharat ka Distributor)
3. Jim Almost Ruins Creed's Birthday - The Office
(The Office)
4. This is what makes employees happy at work | The Way We Work, a TED series
(TED)
5. Jim & Dwight's Party Planning - The Office US
(The Office)
6. 9,986,000 Minutes - The Office US
(The Office)

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