How To Buy Holiday Gifts for Coworkers

It’s easy to get into the holiday spirit around your coworkers, especially when the boss is whistling “Sleigh Bells,” handing out gifts, and letting you go home a few hours early.

It’s always fun to exchange gifts, whether for a gift swap or just out of appreciation, so here are some tips on how to buy the best holiday gifts for your coworkers:

  1. Don’t spend too much. Never spend too much on your boss, or you’ll look like a kiss-up; keep it impersonal, but classy. You may want to spend a little more on your assistants or coworkers who work for you, but going overboard will send the wrong message.
  2. Don’t spend too little. Yes, those Dollar Store plastic snow globes are actually quite pretty. Yes, at that price, you could buy one for everyone in the office. But if a gift looks like it’s from the bargain bin, your coworkers may feel unappreciated and wish you didn’t bother with a gift.
  3. Be sensitive. Yes, it’s nice to get coworkers personal gifts, especially if you’re also friends. So if you know your coworker’s religion, it's okay to give them something related to how they celebrate the holiday. But if you know they’re on a diet, a giant box of chocolates would just be cruel. So be sensitive to your coworkers’ personal situations, and plan your gift appropriately.
  4. Be creative. If you’re an excellent baker, homemade treats in a nice box make the perfect gift. If you paint, use your talent to make a personal gift. And if you have a whole team of coworkers reporting to you, it may not be feasible to buy everyone a gift. So take them out for a holiday lunch, or suggest that you all participate in Adopt-a-Family as an alternative to giving gifts. The holiday spirit is there, and that’s a gift that feels great!
  5. Be genuine. You may not like all of your coworkers, but occasionally you may have to give them a gift at the holidays. Just make sure that when you give it to them, they believe you appreciate them and don’t just feel obligated.

Remember, the holidays are the perfect time to show your coworkers that you appreciate the work they do all year long. You may not be able to give them a huge raise or a promotion, but whatever your gift, make sure it’s wrapped in the holiday spirit.


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