12 inspiring corporate event ideas

Corporate events are part of corporate life. That doesn’t mean they need to be stuffy or dull—or that they should be. With a few inspiring corporate event ideas, you can plan for something really engaging.

Corporate events are supposed to be fun! No matter which kind of corporate event you’re hosting, like a holiday party, a summer picnic for employees or a customer appreciation event, people attend a corporate event expecting to have a good time. And one of the most effective ways to guarantee all attendees enjoy themselves is a creative corporate event that delivers exactly the kind of fun the attendees are seeking. 

It’s not always easy to find a feasible idea that keeps it fresh, so we’ve put together a list of creative corporate event ideas to fit any occasion. Read on to find inspiration for your next corporate event!

Key takeaways

  • Learn the key steps for planning a corporate event.
  • Get inspired by corporate event ideas either in the office or outside the office from a bake-off to a museum tour.
  • If you’re working with a tight budget, browse our budget-friendly corporate event ideas.
  • Discover the important details that determine what kind of corporate event is best for you.

Steps for planning a corporate event

Before we dive into the corporate event ideas, here’s a high-level overview of the steps involved in planning a corporate event:

  • Determine your budget for a corporate event before you start planning. This will help you choose the right kind of activity, catering, design, transportation and any other add-ons. 
  • Get attendee input as you plan the event. This will help you ensure it’s something people actually want to do. 
  • Consider who will be attending the event. Will it be employees only, or will they be bringing their families? 
  • Once the event is planned, communicate clearly and regularly with your team about it. This could be emails, messages or bulletins around the office… or all three. Make sure everybody knows when the event is happening, where it’s happening, what they will be doing and if there is any cost to them.

Creative corporate event ideas

Plan an engaging corporate event with an activity that gives team members the opportunity to be creative and show off their talents. 

Paint and sip

A paint and sip is exactly what it sounds like: participants sip a beverage and socialize while they complete a painting, which is typically guided by an instructor. 

creative corporate event ideas - woman painting on a tabletop easel

Source: via Depositphotos

Depending on your facility, you could host a paint and sip in the office or take the team out to a paint and sip studio. Choose the beverage that’s most appropriate for your team like the traditional wine, or lattes and macchiatos for a morning session or slushies for some fun relief on a hot day. 

Talent show

Host a talent show and have the team showcase the things they might not always share at work, like their awesome guitar or magic skills. Be sure to post flyers around the office to get people to sign up!


A bake-off is a delicious way to combine creativity with competition. Have any non-participants play the role of judges, giving them a yummy way to be part of the action without having to take the heat of the kitchen. Use retractable banners to set the stage for the competition. 

Corporate event ideas that go outside the office

Sometimes, you just want to get out of the office! Celebrate with some fresh air and a change of scenery with these creative corporate events beyond the office. 

Attend a local sporting or music event

Local sports and music are key parts of a city’s cultural fabric. Celebrate not only your company’s culture, but the wider community that shapes it by attending a local sporting or music event. You can even make it special by renting a box or row of seats for the team and printing up branded jerseys or band tees!

Tour a museum

Bring the team to a museum for an educational, immersive way to connect. 

group of people in a museum gallery

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Choose any museum (or aquarium, zoo or cultural center) within a reasonable distance of the office, or have the team vote on where they’d like to go. 

Mini golf

Mini golf is a fun, sporty outing that doesn’t require a ton of athletic exertion on the team’s part. Go to a local course and enjoy a fun day of putting around. Bring branded water bottles or other promotional items to support the team spirit. 

Corporate event ideas that stay inside the office

Sometimes, leaving the office just isn’t feasible… or the best idea. When that’s the case, never fear! There are lots of event ideas that don’t require leaving headquarters. 

In-office escape room

Put your team’s puzzle-solving skills to the test with an in-office escape room. Consider having opposing teams each create an escape room, then race to see who can complete the other’s creation quickest. 

group of people solving an escape room

Source: via Depositphotos

Creative posters can set the scene, transforming the office into an underwater grotto or haunted castle. 

Game day/night

Game day/night is a versatile way to celebrate with the team without having to leave the office. Depending on your team’s interests, it could be:

  • Card games. Maybe you can make it interesting with some wagers and prizes?
  • Board games. Competitive or cooperative, board games bring teams together.
  • Video games. Set up a projector and a console, and you’re good to go!
  • Tabletop roleplaying games. If your crew is of the DnD persuasion, set up a one-shot and fight a monster!
  • Games for big groups like bingo.

Professional development seminar

If your team is required to complete specific professional training sessions, you can turn this into a corporate event. Maybe treat the team to lunch after their seminar, or build a fun outing into the day?


Combine required professional development with a social event and get the double-whammy of credit hours and a good time!

Budget-friendly corporate event ideas

A corporate event doesn’t need to be expensive. Check out these creative corporate event ideas that deliver lots of fun without a huge price tag. 

Trivia challenge

Turn your event into a friendly competition with a trivia challenge! Play trivia games in person or remotely, and push your team to use their brains for victory!


Branded swag is an excellent prize for the winners!

Movie night at the office (or watch party from home)

Movie night is an easy, low-budget way to have fun, and you can adapt it for fully remote teams through apps like Teleparty. You can encourage the team to bring their own snacks or supply the popcorn and other goodies. 

Scavenger hunt

A scavenger hunt is budget-friendly because it can be scaled up or down as needed and costs absolutely nothing. 

woman holding a pen to her lips

Source: via Depositphotos

Have participants find items around the office or around the city, solving puzzles and working together along the way. 


Work employee gifts and giveaways into a scavenger hunt to up the stakes. 

What should you consider when choosing a corporate event?

As you determine the right corporate event for your team, think about: 

  • Your budget and whether you’ll charge attendees for participating.
  • Location and transportation. Should attendees drive to the event? Will you provide transportation?
  • The size of your team.
  • Will attendees bring guests?
  • Would your team prefer a challenging or educational event, or a purely entertaining one? 

Corporate event FAQs

How can I choose the right corporate event?

Ask your team what kinds of events they’d enjoy! Depending on your team, you might need to approach this conversation as a choice between a few options or structure it as a vote. But getting attendee input is critical because it:

  • Helps you create an event they’ll enjoy
  • Gives them a sense of ownership over the event

Which kinds of events are best to avoid?

Generally, it’s best to avoid the following with corporate events:

  • Activities that require attendees to pay large amounts of money to participate
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Events that require attendees to stay overnight
  • Events that are inaccessible to certain attendees, such as a hike that wheelchair users cannot attend

Think about who will attend the event and if there are any potential scenarios that could create discomfort or awkward interactions. For example, a day at the beach might initially sound enjoyable, but team members might not want their colleagues to see them in bathing suits. Similarly, an event at a vineyard or brewery might make employees who don’t drink feel left out. As you plan prizes to award, if you choose to include prizes, be conscientious to strike a balance between valuable, yet not overvalued—in other words, while a branded water bottle is a great prize, a week of PTO can be considered unfair. 

What does a corporate event need?

From a tangible standpoint, a corporate event doesn’t need much. It needs visible branding with your logo, which can be included on digital or print invitations. Food and beverages also make corporate events much more enjoyable, and when events are held off-site, branded table runners can make your company’s “spot” recognizable.

Beyond these needs, a corporate event needs spirit. It needs enthusiasm and participation from its attendees. There are lots of ways to foster this kind of enthusiasm, like event swag and signage.

Design an unforgettable corporate event

Planning a corporate event involves a lot of creative planning and strategizing. Once you’ve worked out what your team will do, when it’s happening and where it will occur, the next step is sending invitations.