Business & Corporate Gifts
10 Things to Consider When Buying a Corporate Gift
Shopping for a corporate gift? Be sure to keep these 10 things in mind as you search for the perfect business gift.
1. Do not spend a lot of money
The number one thing to keep in mind when buying a corporate gift is to not spend a lot of money. The easiest way to make someone feel uncomfortable is to get them something very expensive or extravagant.
Even if you have the budget to do so, go with a simpler gift that will get across the same message without the added negative feelings. This is about showing your appreciation, and you don’t have to do that by spending a lot.
2. Be cautious with alcohol
Getting a nice bottle of wine, for example, may seem like a great gift idea to get for your boss or as a thank you gift for a client after finishing a major project. However, if you are not sure if the person (or people) drinks alcohol, it is best to go with something else entirely (a coffee basket perhaps?!)
If you have gone out for a client dinner and ordered wine, you are likely safe to consider this as an option, especially if you have bonded over a particular type of wine or brand. In that case, it could make for a nice relevant business gift idea, but if not, it is always better to be safe than sorry.
3. Don’t leave anyone out
Are you considering getting something for your team? Whether you are the manager or just a team member, make sure when you make your decision you have everyone in mind. That doesn’t mean your entire company (unless you are a small business) but should include all of the direct people you work with day to day. The last thing you want to do is single certain people out and make them feel bad!
4. When in doubt, ask HR
If you are really questioning if a certain corporate gift idea you have is okay (or in general if you should get someone or some people a gift) go to your HR department and see what they say. Your company may have certain rules in place, or they may simply be able to give you some practical advice.
5. Personalization is great
If you are worried that the gift you select will either be too personal (and perhaps inappropriate) or too general and feel like a waste, a great way to bridge that gap is by getting a simple item and having it personalized with the person’s name or initials!
This makes the gift feel much more significant without it crossing a line. Best of all, you can personalize just about anything, so this shouldn’t limit you in any way, but it is simply a nice touch that you can safely add to a gift.
6. Be careful with international gifts
Do you work with international clients? You may want to get them a gift as well at the end of the year, for example. If you are dealing with a different culture than your own, make sure you check that what you are giving them is appropriate.
Just because you think it is okay, in their culture it may actually be considered offensive. It is always best to do some research or ask someone who knows better about certain cultural expectations instead of just assuming or taking a guess.
7. Presentation matters
Normally the thought with gifts is that it is the thought that counts, and while that is still true, put some effort into how you present your gift. Wrap it up nicely and make it look like you spent some time. If you aren’t good with gift wrapping, pay the few extra dollars to have a professional do it.
It is small details like this that actually make a big difference and can really make the person on the receiving end feel appreciated and special. A poorly wrapped gift, even if a nice one, gives the appearance that you don’t really care and threw something together last minute. Not very professional!
8. Get personal in the right way
This is a big one! You want this gift to feel personal without going over the line. How do you do that? It’s easy. Consider including a handwritten card with your gift, and if possible, deliver the gift in person.
If you are throwing an end of the year party, it is easy enough to hand out all of your gifts for your team (for example). This will really show everyone that you do care and wanted to do something nice without going over the top in any sort of way. Small touches like this can make a big difference and will really make your team feel valued!
9. Ask coworkers for advice
Are you new to the job and shopping for your boss? Rather than trying to figure this out on your own, consider going to a colleague and asking what the typical policy is.
Do people typically get the manager a gift, or does that not happen at your office? Perhaps instead of everyone getting a gift, people pitch in to get one nicer gift. You don’t know unless you ask! Figure this out ahead of time to avoid any potential awkwardness on the day of the Christmas party.
10. Trust your gut
Finally, trust your gut! A lot of times worrying about getting the perfect gift is simply a result of overthinking the situation. Instead, get what you feel will be a nice corporate gift and give it with exactly that intention.