PARTY ON

With corporate profits slumping, company parties may look like candidates for the budget ax. But don’t cancel your annual holiday morale-builder so quickly, suggests Tom Salt, managing director of the International Society of Meeting Planners in Alexandria, Minnesota. “The venues are going to be fighting for your dollar, so shop around,” he says. “You may be able to put on the same party for less.” Save again by emphasizing imagination over excess. “Instead of renting a big ballroom, a 40-piece orchestra, and serving rack of lamb and champagne and caviar, you could do a Cajun theme or a luau for a lot less money, but still be fun and unique.”