Getting a Gift for Your Employees: 5 Points to Remember


You wouldn’t have a business without your workforce. So what can you do to make your staff feel appreciated for the holidays? It might be more important than ever with recent events cutting into the bonuses your employees likely expect.

With that in mind, here are five points to remember to show your workers how much you care.

1. If You Buy for One, Buy for All

You know that Barb in accounting spends her days dreaming of Maui, and you spy the perfect Hawaiian shirt that you know she’ll love. Should you get it even if you don’t buy the rest of the crew a lei?

Hold onto your wallet and surfboard — overly personalized gifts can make the recipient feel uncomfortable, even targeted. If such a doubt enters your mind, heed it.

Additionally, it’s impossible to match other gifts in terms of thoughtfulness, not just dollar value. Someone will feel slighted, and then you have a resentful employee.

2. Exercise Sensitivity

One of your favorite clients is the sausage king of Chicago, and he offers to hook you up with enough gift packs of cheese and snack logs to delight everyone in your crew. Well, except Vicki, as she’s a vegan.

When it comes to food and drink gifts, please save them if you want to exercise sensitivity toward your staff. You never know who is starting keto or attending Alcoholics Anonymous after-hours. Just because your team is 21+ doesn’t mean they all welcome a whiskey sampler.

Worse, you could unintentionally trigger someone with a food allergy if you don’t know the ingredient list. Anaphylaxis from eating the wrong thing sends 30,000 people to the ER every year, and if Becky, the bookkeeper, lacks insurance, guess what? You may have just given her the gift of a huge hospital bill for the holidays.

3. Go Wholesale Whenever Possible

Buying in bulk is always wise when it comes to cutting costs. Let’s say you’re planning on giving every employee at your dealership a gift bag with different items like toy cars. Good news! Many retailers also include freebies when you purchase sufficient quantities, extending your gift-giving dollar even further.

Another benefit of buying wholesale is uniformity. There’s no question that Steve in sales got a better gift than Marge in marketing.

That doesn’t mean there isn’t some room for personalization. For example, if you don’t need your team shirts to double as uniforms, why not get them in various styles and colors? If your business model does require people to wear the same old, same old day in and day out, a pair of funky socks allows a dash of spirit to shine against the khaki or navy.

4. Please With Choice — But Be Careful With Gift Cards

You know the saying about how you can’t please everyone all the time. However, giving the gift of choice goes far in ensuring that everyone gets something they can use.

Please avoid the mistake of thinking gift cards aren’t taxable the way bonuses are. According to IRS code subsection 61, the gift exclusion does not apply to any amount transferred by an employer for the benefit of an employee.

However, exclusions do apply for items that fall under the de minimis exception, which covers things considered too small to render accounting practicable. General merchandise gift cards are out — but letting an employee choose between a free coffee or tea gift basket is okay.

5. Please Remember — Time Can Make the Best Gift

While official government figures state that relatively few Americans work multiple jobs, statistics don’t show the truth given the gig economy. Plus, the people who hold down numerous shifts daily do so because they can’t meet their basic needs on one income. They’re chronically short of both time and money, but they’ll never tell you out of fear of being labeled a whiner — or worse.

The gift of paid leave may be the most coveted present a stressed-out employee can receive, plus it doesn’t negatively impact your bottom line much. Since many people hesitate to take PTO out of fear of repercussions, require them to take time off — and pay them for it. They’ll thank you a million times when they finally sit down for a holiday meal with their families.

Keep These 5 Points in Mind When Getting a Gift for Your Employees

You want to show your employees your appreciation this holiday season. Keep the above five tips in mind when getting them a gift this holiday season.

About the Author:

Oscar Collins is the managing editor at Modded. He writes about cars, fitness, the outdoors and more. Follow @TModded on Twitter for more articles from the Modded team.

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