How to celebrate Navratri at work

How to celebrate Navratri at work

How to celebrate Navratri at work

Celebrating Navratri at the workplace can lighten up an otherwise dull office atmosphere boosting employee morale

Navratri is a celebration of colour and tradition, it is also one of the most popular Indian festival. Every Indian state has its own rituals and ceremonies to mark the occasion, and in this diversity lies the beauty of the festival. “Today’s organisations are increasingly recognising and leveraging festivals to promote employee bonding, drive a positive working condition and show their respect to local culture. The entire mantra of `having fun at work’ finds expression through such initiatives,” explains Ruchi Shah, vice president human resources, Euro Tech Solutions.

Events and entertainment

Everyone loves to play Dandiya, right? A large scale dandiya event wherein the spouse is also invited is on the cards for some organisations. It is a great way to add a fun twist to the otherwise predictable office parties and the addictive beats of the thumping music will give employees a night to remember.

For more sedate settings, workplaces organise prayer ceremonies and pujas to mark the auspicious days. The ninth day of Navratri is celebrated as Saraswati Puja, where prayers are offered to the Goddess of wisdom and learn ing. On Dusshera, means of implement such as computers, books and machinery are worshipped by organisations to bring prosperity in the year ahead. New ventures and projects can be kickstarted on this day, as it is believed to be the best time to initiate something new.

Go ethnic

What is Navratri without the beautiful clothes? A simple yet fun way of wearing your festive side on your sleeve (literally) is an ethnic themed day during Navratri. “This is a festival which just lends itself to dressing up. From the elegant Gujarati style sarees to the long mirror work skirts, Navratri is a fashion lover’s delight. My office has an ethnic day every Navratri, where employees are encouraged to dress up to the hilt. It is fun to see the formal workplace come alive with vibrant hues.To add to the fun, we even had a polaroid photographer taking pic tures last year,” says Sadhana Ranjan, senior copywriter, Trident. Alternately, a theme along the lines of Durga Puja will ask the women to dress as per true Bengali tradition by wearing a bright red saree, white blouse and red tikka. Each of the nine days of Navratri has a special colour dedicated to it. It is believed that if you don the special colour on the designated day, it will bring you great prosperity. Explains Neetu Singh, founder, Zion Fashion, “Coming to work every day in formals can get monotonous. We thought it would be a fun, collective activity to have employees wear the colours of Navratri everyday. We pre-issued a `colour calendar’ which listed out the various days and corresponding colours. The response was overwhelming. Everyone, from the peons to the upper management, revelled in the spirit of the festival!”

Food fiesta

The best part about Indian festivals is undoubtedly the delicious food one gets to gorge on. There’s no better way to celebrate at the workplace than by coming up with a special delicious festive spread.

“We usually do an authentic Indian thali meal for employees to celebrate Navratri. Last year, we organised a special Bengali meal, including the special khichdi which one can get only get at Durga pandals,” reveals Shah. If nothing else, some traditional sweets will be well appreciated by all ­ after all, who doesn’t love some good old mithai?

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