GUIDE TO SANE GIFT SHOPPING & GIVING
Alice Bredin, in the OPEN Small Business Network Semi-Annual Monitor, advised businesses to recognize “the importance of making…staff feel appreciated…for contributing to the firm’s success can generate a tremendous amount of good will toward the company.”
Just as with clients, (see Frugalista Gift Ideas-36+ Gifts for Client Appreciation) gifts to employees shouldn’t be used as a creative way to promote the company and logo. Surveys continue to show that employees also appreciate personalized, rather than value-based, gifts.
Experts do agree that gifts to employees must include all; and be fairly equal in value.
Here’s the first installment of ideas for employee holiday gifts or some unrelated and/or future occasion, like these:
Secret Santa. Retirement events. Secretary/Admin Day. Bosses Day.
Client Appreciation. Happy Promotion. Thank you for your years of service.
New Employee Welcome Gifts. You done good awards. Incentive awards.
Yay team awards. Prizes for employee competitions.
The gift ideas in all the Frugalista Gift Ideas: Appreciating Employees segments are at varied price points to accommodate your office gift giving rules and/or budget. This segment addresses the practical employees.
Have a bunch of coffee, tea or soda drinking employees? Consider the 16 ounce Contigo’s Autoseal West Loop Stainless Steel Travel Mug. It’s advertised as spill and leak proof. And it’ll keep their beverage hot or cold on
the way to work, even in a four-hour commute for hot drinks or a twelve-hour one for cold. Bonus? These will work for drinks at the office as well. Comes in nine vibrant colors.
$21 (single) $40 (2-Pack) gocontigo.com
$17-$19 (single) $55 (for 3) amazon.com
Currently, if you sign up for Contigo’s newsletter you get a code for 20% off first purchase. You can, of course, unsubscribe anytime after getting the code.
Employee a tea drinker who’d rather use leaves? Try the Tea
Infuser Travel Mug. A drop-down basket holds and steeps loose tea. Double-walled insulation. Bonus? You’re supporting the museum.
Coffee and tea drinkers like it hot. They’ll welcome adding a mug warmer to their desks. Brookstone promises that this mug/coffee cup warmer keeps hot beverages warm or hot, your choice, until the end. Works with 3 ½” diameter cups and mugs.
Or maybe your employee’s trying to break the coffee habit. Get them Choffy, 100% premium cacao (cocoa beans). It brews like coffee and smells like chocolate — without caffeine and with few calories. But, with plenty of stimulant: Theobromine the healthy kind. Also great if they love chocolate.
$15 – 12 oz; $36 - 2 lb bag, Ivory Coast classic original; $20 – 12 oz Mamberamo Choffy from Papua New Guinea; $15 12 oz La Española Choffy from the Dominican Republic. drinkchoffy.com
Surely, you’ve heard employees talk about things they like/love to do or own. If necessary, glance around their work area for clues. Keep in mind, though, not to make the incentive gift too personal. For instance steer clear of personal care, political, religious, etc. items.
It’s not a gold watch, but the 7:49 AM unisex watch complements just about any attire. And the recipient will get loads of complements. Unique design with analog display, Also water-resistant.
$39 $24 fab.com
Have employees with iPads? One, or several, would appreciate an Apple Smart Case cover. This one is polyurethane and doubles as a stand. Wakes and sleeps the iPad. Various colors. For iPad and iPad2. Per CNET, will also fit the 3rd generation.
$50 Bestbuy.com (iPad2 and iPad)
Or, try a less expensive one. The Hard Candy Bubble 360 offers a built-in screen cover and a dimpled back case. It’s made from indestructible materials. Only in white or black. $18 hardcandycases.com
The employee might prefer a blinged-out iPad cover to distinguish theirs from the crowd, Check out retailers like Zazzle.com for cases like these:
A Glassdoor employee survey indicated almost ninety-five percent didn’t appreciate or didn’t care about holiday parties. However, most employees would love to get cash bonuses for the holidays. That or salary increases. The current economic situation might make that impossible. At least in any significant way. So, consider something memorable or meaningful for the employee or co-worker.
Workplace experts say that even modest gifts show employees that you at least acknowledge their hard work.
Whatever you decide, don’t give your employees something emblazoned with the company logo.
Your practical employee might appreciate a credit card that transforms into a super sharp, pocket utility knife. The Sinclair CardSharp2 might even come in handy at work. Three simple folds readies the stainless steel surgical blade for duty. A useful tool that’s also handy and very cool. (International item: Note that Sinclair estimates 28 day delivery time.)
Employee carry a briefcase? The sleek design of the Wenger Carbon MacBook Air features a business organizer, magazine compartment, accessory pocket, business organizer and more. The slim case has a notebook compartment that is specially designed to fit the Macbook Air.
Almost everything in their wallet is RFID-enabled, from the grocery store card to the credit cards. Most of which wirelessly transmits personal and financial information. The Flipside 2x Wallet has been called a” portable vault for your pocket.” It shields up to seven RFID-enabled cards and has a compartment for their cash. Bonus: when it’s closed, it looks like a smart phone or iPod-like device. Available in seven colors.
Happy Frugalista Shopping! May you find the perfect gifts that make your employees smile–and know you appreciate them.
Thanks for stopping by. Come back for the next installment of FRUGALISTA GIFT IDEAS: APPRECIATING EMPLOYEES for more personalized ideas.
© DLewis 2012
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