Best Employee Holiday Gifts of 2012

November 19, 2012 | By

As an election year comes to a close, Americans are well aware of the issues our country and our economy face. The fact that yearly bonuses aren’t coming is a grave reality workers from coast-to-coast have to live with. However, employers everywhere should understand the competitive advantage companies who build a workforce and employee relationship have in the modern world. In a time where less than optimal pay scales are the norm, creative gifts from employers can have a positive impact.

Saying it’s the thought that counts is indeed cliché, but there is some validity to that statement in the corporate world. Employees that are recognized for their hard work are more likely to continue giving their full effort.

It’s easy to ignore the people who put in 40 hours a week when issues are constantly being brought to the table of upper management, but it’s the effort of the 40 hour worker that keeps the lights on. The use of corporate gifts is not only a strong symbol of goodwill, but they can also be a great boost to your marketing efforts.

When considering gift ideas for employees, there are few things to keep in mind. The list below provides tips and examples that are sure to please this holiday season.

Inappropriate Tokens of Appreciation

All gifts should be deemed appropriate. HR issues can abound when employers give gifts of a personal nature. While your intentions may be innocent, your final result could produce unnecessary HR headaches.

Most Common Inappropriate Gifts:

  • Perfume and Cologne – even the sweetest smelling scent can cause an HR stench.
  • Jewelry – Watches to celebrate milestones being a big exception.
  • Sexy Clothing – low cut shirts being the most common corporate mistake.
  • Alcohol – Don’t blame an HR nightmare on the alcohol.

 The Family Test

All employers should think about how their employees will interpret the present before they deliver it. For example, baskets of food are always appropriate. The easiest way to see if a holiday gift will pass the test is to envision the reaction of a parent or a spouse. If they would be offended in anyway, it’s time to look for another token of appreciation.

Best examples of Appropriate Gifts:

  • Coffee Mugs – Every morning will serve as a reminder of your appreciation.
  • Company Shirts and Hoodies – Allows employees to show company pride and advertise.
  • Engraved Pens – Another great way to offer a constant reminder of your thanks.
  • Picture Frames – A great option for employees who like to showcase their family on their desk.

Gift boxed presentMarketing Opportunities

The next opportunity when purchasing corporate holiday gifts comes in the way of labeling. When labeled gifts are received, they work in two ways.

First, your employee feels recognized and motivated to help a company that cares.

Secondly, every time they wear or use their gift, an employee spreads brand awareness. This is a powerful marketing tool and a golden opportunity to spread goodwill and increase visibility.

The truth is the biggest advantage any business has is their people. A successful business looks at their workers as commodities; a flailing business looks at their workers as a cost to keep minimized. A bit of good will during the holiday season can go a long way towards out performing rival businesses and improving the bottom line in the New Year. Getting a little creative with low cost gift ideas can end up paying for themselves and more later on.

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Category: Employee/Business Relationship, Recognition, Recognition Gifts

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