It’s that time of the year again, when office workers around the world slap on their most hideous handmade Christmas sweaters (sorry grandma), pack back a couple of eggnogs, and leave the relative safety of their cubicles to attend the rite of passage known only as… the office holiday party.
Yes, ye olde yuletide work festivities have become a common ordeal for many of us. If you’ve ever been to one before you know they can be… well, a little hard to handle sometimes. There are the long drawn-out speeches, the mystery meat appetizers, the obligatory fruit cake gift baskets, and of course, that weird creepy guy from accounting who’s just begging to shake his money maker on the dance floor to Justin Bieber.
Fortunately, you’ll be pleased to know that Corel’s annual holiday parties here in Ottawa are absolutely nothing like that. No painful speeches. No terrible music. No stomach-churning crab cakes. Instead our shindigs are just what a good party should be: a bunch of hardworking people who hang out, kick back and celebrate good times like Kool & the Gang.
Take this year’s festivities for instance. Our annual holiday party was held at Lago, a bar and grill which also offers a beautiful view of Ottawa’s historic Dow’s Lake. There was live music, tasty snacks and of course, dancing. For a bunch of people who crank out software for a living you’d be surprised by our collective move bustin’ abilities. What we lack in rhythm, style or even basic hand-to-eye coordination we more than make up for with eggnog-induced enthusiasm.
All in all it was a fantastic night out and a big thanks to party planner extraordinaire, Tracy Langille, for organizing the whole thing. Sure, some of us may have been hurting the next morning after the last candy cane martini was gone, but it was worth it. Say what you want about our questionable dance moves, we know how to party.
And so do Corel employee’s children, apparently. At this year’s annual kid’s party, there were a record number of people on hand to celebrate. Production Designer Mark Kelly helped organize the event which featured Rock Band, face painting and the sport legally required at all Canadian holiday kids’ parties: floor hockey. Santa himself even took some time out of his busy schedule of elf supervision to sling some presents for the lil’ Corel rugrats.
Of course, Corel has a lot to celebrate this year. We had some of our biggest product launches ever, including Painter 12 and VideoStudio Pro X4 (shameless plug! But seriously, try them, they’re awesome), snagged a few new additions to our product line-up (welcome aboard PDF Fusion and CorelCAD) and in a global economy that’s melting faster than Frosty at a 24-hour day spa, we managed to stay financially strong and competitive.
Yet, despite the seasonal celebrations and the amazing accomplishments, this is also the one time of the year when companies need to realize that making a profit is one thing, showing your employees you actually value them is something else entirely. It’s a lesson that Corel shows not only during the holidays, but throughout the year and why so many of us love what we do every day. Of course, even the jolly old fat guy needs a break, which is why those of us here at Corel will be looking forward to chilling out with family and friends over the holidays and settling down for a long winter’s nap.
Happy Holidays and all the best in 2012!