Uh oh! It is holiday time. The questions of what gifts to give can be quite perplexing. Giving the boss a gift can be seen as brown nosing, but not giving the boss a gift can be seen as an insult to them. Oh, what to do in this world of hyper sensitive office environments? Well, here is a list of things to give that will not have you as the subjects of the twittersphere while still wishing your coworkers a token of appreciation. Here is a list of gift choices that are appropriate for your fellow employees:
- Food is good, but some people only eat bird seen and leaves, so a box of donuts is not appreciated. Plus, some people are trying to watch what they eat during the holidays and are insulted when the food is not part of their diet or because it is part of their diet. On second thought, food is not good! However, food gift cards, like a Honey Baked ham or Starbucks, lets them do the choosing. A much better idea.
- Sports team memorabilia- this can be a nice choice as long as you are sure what team they support, and they have not recently lost a major game causing all true fans to be depressed.
- Toyish trinkets- Think spinners or Rubik’s cubes; items like this are seldom inappropriate and can be fun knick knacks.
- Office safe potted plants- It is important to choose ones that can sit on the desk and are able to live in the dark with no water for weeks. If the office environment has the option of keeping a plant at the desk, these work well. Plus, there are plants that live basically in the dark with water every few months, and plants tend to cheer people up for a long time.
- Coffee cups, water bottles, etc.- These actually work well, especially if a nice, politically correct, logo or saying is on them. Avoid using company logo —giving those just says you care enough to raid the conference room closet.
Whatever you do, keep it inexpensive. Government employees cannot accept anything with a value over $25 and that is a good rule of thumb. If there is someone very special, then do not use their holiday office gift as their gift. Make it a personal gift and give it outside the office environment.