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Office cleaning for Chinese New Year & how to celebrate in the Office

Office cleaning for Chinese New Year & how to celebrate in the Office

The Chinese New Year, also known as Lunar New Year, is approaching, and it is perhaps one of the most important holidays in the region. People all across the world, from Singapore to Malaysia to Hong Kong and China, begin decorating their houses weeks before the New Year, and some even take vacation leave to spend the celebration with friends and family. That isn’t to suggest that it can’t be enjoyed at work as well.

If you’re looking for ways to celebrate Chinese New Year in the office, here are our top eight suggestions, all of which are simple to implement and will be enjoyable for everyone, regardless of their background.

Office Cleaning for Chinese New Year & How to Celebrate in the Office

1. Spring Cleaning in the Office

For a good reason, Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival – yes, spring cleaning! Often done at home to ward off ill-luck. While it isn’t the most pleasurable exercise, it does put you at ease (both mentally and physically) once you’ve completed your homework. Surely, having an ordered workplace environment will benefit you, and I’m sure your office needs a little tidying up anyhow, right? A word of advice: do it before the holidays begin, as doing it during the holidays is considered bad luck.

2. Decorate the Office

On the subject of office spring cleaning, now is the ideal time to decorate the office and get everyone in the spirit for the holiday season! If you’re not sure what to put up, Chinese red lanterns are a good place to start; hang one on the office main door to ward off bad luck, according to legend. The following are some other common items:

  • Door couplets – best wishes for the coming year
  • Paper cuttings – luck and happiness
  • Kumquat tree – good luck and wealth
  • Blooming flowers – a prosperous New Year

3. Toss ‘Lou Sang’ or ‘Yusheng’ (prosperity salad)

Nothing says Chinese New Year like taking your chopsticks and flinging a variety of ingredients into the air while chanting auspicious phrases like ‘Congratulations for your riches’ or ‘Abundance throughout the year’ in Chinese or… Huat ah (which means prosperity ah)! Much of the food, predictably, ends up on the table rather than on plates. It’s a messy tradition, but it’s also a lot of fun and satisfaction for everyone involved.

4. CNY Visiting (bai nian)

A tradition that is regularly observed at home has recently been extended to the workplace. Bai nian is a Chinese New Year greeting ritual that involves giving the elders a couple of oranges and some good wishes in exchange for red packets containing fortunate money. Employees will bai nian to their bosses or seniors in the office, and while bosses are not required to offer red packets, it is always a lovely gesture for good fortune.

5. Lunch or Dinner for the Office Reunion

During family reunion feasts, be prepared to gain weight from all the savory spring rolls and dumplings, as well as the sweet delights like tang yuan (rice balls) and sponge cake. If you still haven’t had your fill, don’t worry; you can always plan a reunion lunch with your second family – your coworkers – when you return from vacation. It’s a fantastic way to bring the entire office together and make them feel like one big family.

Office Cleaning for Chinese New Year Celebration

6. Hire a team of lion dancers

Apart from entertainment, there’s a compelling reason why organizations choose to book a lion dance performance around Chinese New Year. The Chinese believe that the lion would bring prosperity and good fortune to their businesses in the coming year, and I’m sure it’s something that no business would turn down! The lion dance is also frequently done at weddings, birthday parties, and other significant occasions.

7. Dress Up

Wearing new clothes during the Spring Festival is essential because it symbolizes the popular Chinese New Year idea of letting go of the old and welcoming in the new. If you’re still looking for the perfect dress, aim for something with a more traditional flare, such as táng zhuāng or qí páo, and red as a color. Encourage everyone in the company to dress up in their favorite attire, and hold a fun competition to see who is the best dressed in the office to add some spice to the proceedings!

8. Chinese New Year Snacks should be served.

Chinese New Year isn’t complete without the accompanying delectable delicacies. Yes, it’s time to replenish that depleted pantry! Let’s begin with my personal favorite, bakkwa or rougan, a roasted meat snack (typically pig) that’s similar to jerky but better (arguably).

A close second would be pineapple tart: soft and buttery on the outside, sweet on the interior (salivating). Of course, there are many other Chinese New Year goodies to enjoy, such as:

  • Sunflower seeds
  • Dried longans
  • Assorted sweets
  • niángāo (年糕) – new year steamed cake

That’s all eight of them! I’d like to greet everyone with a happy Chinese New Year and a good year ahead on behalf of HCH