Hosting a potluck dinner at work is a great way to boost moral, and it allows people to share a good dinner with their coworkers. While working as a certified nurse’s aide at the local nursing facility we had these wonderful potluck dinners the entire third shift enjoyed immensely.
Pick a day, when the majority of staff is there. Potluck dinners work better that way.
Each Friday after payday we would all bring in a dish to pass, the only stipulation was that it had to feed at least the fifteen to twenty staff members for the night shift. One nurse always brought plates and napkins but we used the facilities silverware.
Pick a set up place beforehand so staff knows where to set up their potluck dinners. Food was to be set up on the cafeteria counter before
1 am and would need to be picked up before 5 am.
How will food arrive? Make sure there are outlets for crock-pots or other electrical equipment. The food arrived in crock-pots, bowls, and even pans. Most of the delicious food was homemade while a small portion was store bought, it did not matter to us, and everyone ate well that night. This was easy to organize, as there were no rules per se. Each person could bring what he or she wished to bring. Some brought main courses, some brought salads, and some brought desserts.
Sometimes it is fun to set a theme, make it Mexican or Italian one week. We did a salad night, when everyone brought in salad toppings. Staff who grew produce brought in bounty from their gardens, plenty of lettuce, tomatoes, carrots and the rest.
The beauty of these potlucks was that they were flexible. No one said you bring a meat, and you bring a vegetable. Everyone brought what they wanted, what they could afford and it worked out pretty good. There was always a nice mix of food for everyone to eat.
The idea was born from a conversation I had with Cindy who was the part time nursing supervisor. She was a single woman, who had no one to cook for and hated cooking small portions. I on the other hand am a single mom, and I craved the homemade macaroni and cheese that she often brought in, but I did not cook it at home, because my children did not eat it.
We told others of our idea to bring in a dish to pass and the response we got was overwhelming to say the least. Our potluck dinner idea was a smash hit, and they still do it every other Friday after five years.