Gift-giving Etiquette for Work Holiday Parties

Gift-giving Etiquette for Work Holiday Parties

Is a bottle of alcohol ok? Should your gift be personalized? As a leading recruiting agency, Peoplelink knows there are a lot of questions about gift-giving for holiday office parties. Below are some tips to help ensure you give the most appropriate gift:

Be Thoughtful About Your Gift

Don’t just go out and buy the least expensive item. Think about what the person would really enjoy when doing your shopping. Some popular and safe options include gift cards to local restaurants or merchants, or sports tickets.

If you’re not sure what the person will like, then opt for something office related, such as a stylish pen or new organizer. If you want to pay the extra expense to personalize these kinds of gifts, it’s certainly a nice touch.

Also, if you don’t know the person well, avoid gifts like alcohol. The recipient may or may not drink and even if they do, people’s tastes typically vary considerably between beer, wine and alcohol and specific brands and varieties. So unless you know the exact beverage they drink (and that they do, in fact, drink), steer clear.

Avoid Gag Gifts

While it’s tempting to buy joke gifts for co-workers to liven up the celebration, avoid it. You could wind up unintentionally embarrassing or upsetting someone. Instead go for items that are tasteful and thoughtful. If you want to give a gag gift to a co-worker who also happens to be your friend, then do it in private instead.

Be Careful About What You Spend

If a certain amount isn’t set for holiday gifts, don’t try to impress your co-workers by outspending them. Less is more when it comes to gift-giving at work. That doesn’t mean you need to be cheap; it simply means to use some common sense when buying a gift for a co-worker.

Give the Boss a Combined Gift

Rather than buying something for your boss by yourself – and making it look like you’re trying to kiss up – combine forces with your co-workers and buy one gift. You’ll all look appreciative, rather than like you alone are trying to win favor. Plus you’ll be able to purchase a much better gift.

Don’t Rely on Someone Else to Buy Your Gift

Unless you tell them exactly what to buy, don’t have your assistant or your spouse just run out and grab a gift for a colleague. Do the leg work yourself. Otherwise, you may wind up giving out a terrible or inappropriate gift without even realizing it. Or a recipient could thank you for the gift and you might not know what you gave them.

And if the best gift you could get this holiday season is a new job, give Peoplelink a call. As a leading recruiting agency, we’ve successfully placed more than 150,000 professionals in temporary and full-time positions over the past 20 years. We can help you find your next great job too. Contact us today to learn more.