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Global Workforce

January National Holidays

One of the cultural challenges of employing workers all over the world is the recognition of national holidays and days of remembrance that are an important part of their local reality. Making mention of these days and sending well wishes as they happen can go a long way toward building bridges and affinities with your global teams, though they may be oceans away.

Here are some prominent holidays coming up in January, along with a brief description. We hope it helps you take steps toward further connecting with and honoring your employees across the world.

New Year’s Day (1 January). New Year’s commemorates the beginning of the new Gregorian calendar. This is arguably the most widely celebrated holiday in the world, with revelers gathering in public spaces amid fireworks and champagne.  

Epiphany (6 January). Epiphany celebrates the revelation in the weeks following the birth of Christ that the child was an incarnation of God. 

Orthodox Christmas (7 January). This holiday commemorates the same event as the rest of Christendom – the birth of Jesus Christ. The main difference is that it’s observed slightly later, as the date is pegged to the Julian calendar rather than the Gregorian. Christmas is also celebrated on this date by Coptic Christians in the Arab world, who also use the Julian calendar.   

Makar Sankranti (14 January). Celebrated throughout Bengali-speaking areas under many different names, Makar Sankranti commemorates the day that the sun begins “moving” northward in the sky according to calculations in Hindu astronomy. The resulting holiday is a day (or several) to worship the sun and reflect on one’s spiritual wellbeing. 

Chinese/Lunar New Year (22 January). A major event in Chinese and Chinese-influenced cultures, Chinese New Year is one of the year’s most exuberant festivals. Celebrations continue for two weeks and include elaborate decorations, feasts, lanterns, fireworks, food dragon dances, and much more. 

Republic Day (26 January). Celebrates the date on which the Constitution of India came into effect. This is a public holiday and celebrations include the Republic Day Parade and the Beating Retreat ceremony. This year marks the 74th Republic day.