As a small business, a strong company culture is important to us and we strive to create a happy, positive work environment for our employees. What makes people more happy and positive than good food?! One Friday afternoon an office discussion took a random turn (like many office discussions do) and the idea of Crocktober came to fruition.

Crocktober is an optional office wide potluck for employees (building wide). Inside our building there are multiple small businesses and entrepreneurs that share a common kitchen area so we took a quick survey on who would be interested in participating in this fun idea of organized meals. After a good response from most of the building we created our Crocktober sign up calendar!

Let’s dive in a little further on how Crocktober actually works.

We chose Tuesday's, Wednesday's, and Friday's as our Crocktober meal days because we have the most people in our building those days. People were able to sign their name and the meal they'd like to share on our handy dandy calendar. We also left a section on our calendar where people could write down any strong food dislikes, intolerances, or allergies (mushrooms, EW!) Since we're all on different schedules, most people chose a meal that could be easily heated in a crockpot (hence the name Crocktober) or something that could sit out for an extended period of time.

I personally loved having a scheduled plan for lunch most days of the week. It helped me take a mental break from work and actually sit down and enjoy a really good meal rather than working through lunch or snacking at my desk. Not to mention, I saved A LOT of money by cutting back on Jimmy John's deliveries.

Rachelle says, “My favorite part of Crocktober was not having to plan out meals. Plus, I always knew I was getting a quality meal and it was a fun surprise to try all the amazing recipes people would bring.”

During the month of October we feasted on delicious meals like chicken fajitas, a taco bar, chili, chicken tortilla soup, chicken curry, shepard’s pie, homemade chicken noodle soup, and more! Crocktober was such a hit that we decided to extend it second month to Nom Nom November (thanks Angie for the creative name inspo!)

Together we make up a team that values great design, creative thinking, innovative processes, collaboration, and as you can tell, good food! It’s important to keep your team fueled and energized and Crocktober is just one thing we tried and found success with. Crocktober might not be feasible in your office, but there are a million other ways to make your employees feel appreciated.