People nowadays spend so much time at work that it's become almost like a second home to many workers. So, it's not surprising that a baby shower is planned when a co-worker or their spouse becomes pregnant.
Now, while most baby showers just involve family and friends, work baby showers should ideally just have co-workers invited. It would be rather rude to keep inviting the same people (friends and family) to several baby showers for the same person.
But before any showers are held, it's best to get permission from the management. Also check regarding the use of the board room or other area in the office. If everything is full, hold the baby shower in the cafeteria. That should at least take care of the problem of lunch!
It's a bit trickier to have a baby shower at work because of the time constraints involved. The usual time for work showers is at lunch break or after office hours. That limits it to about an hour instead of the usual two. That means being ruthless with the activities that will take place at the shower.
Once permission is granted and you have a rough outline of the schedule of activities, ask your co-workers for help. One person can be in charge of bringing paper plates, another plastic utensils, another paper napkins, and the other decorations for the party area.
People can also bring food, and it can be assigned in groups. Assign each group a course (beverage group provides the plastic glasses as well) like an appetizer tray, a main meal and dessert.
Obviously, not everyone at the office are in the same financial situation. Therefore, it would be unrealistic of you to ask everyone to contribute a set amount. Pass a closed box around for everyone to put in their contribution based on what they can afford.
Work within this budget, and no more. If it's not enough, ask your co-workers to chip in for the food and use the contributions for a group gift instead. Or simplify the menu to cake and juice instead. An inexpensive variation on the cake is to build veritable tower of brownies or Mallomars cookies held together by toothpicks. Doughnut centers would work here, too.
When buying gifts, think about how your co-worker will bring her gift home. Sometimes, the gift certificate is the way to go especially if she's commuting and is already heavily pregnant. No matter how much she needs it, it will be difficult for your co-worker to lug a large stroller or baby bathtub home.
A great solution to this is to give your co-worker of the gift you purchased and then have it delivered to her home. Or, purchase a gift certificate at your local department store so the mommy-to-be can buy exactly what she needs.
Decorations should be simple, maybe a balloon arrangement that she can put on her desktop afterward. Don't overdo, you still need to clean it up!
And last, never, ever serve alcoholic drinks while you are at the