Monday, 19 November 2012

10 Worst Corporate Christmas Gifts

Christmas is the one time of year (apart from bonuses day) when bosses can show their employees how much they are valued. With big Christmas cheques becoming a thing of the past, companies are looking for ways in which they can show their appreciation. Enter the rise of the corporate Christmas gifts. A well chosen corporate Christmas gift can earn an employee months of hard work and loyalty from their team. But beware, the ill-thought out or down right stingy gifts could result in just the opposite. Here are our top 10 corporate gifts to steer clear of.

1. Company Stocks

Now if you’re a big fat multimillion-multinational operation a la Google or McDonald's ignore this point. However, if you’re the local coffee shop or high street accountancy firm company shares aren't really going to get your employees excited. The chance of them ever being able to trade them in for the big bucks over in The City are pretty slim. So all your employees are really left with is a pretty piece of paper – you’re better off saving the trees.

2. Things For The Office

A good office will supply stationery as standard. Do not use Christmas as an excuse to make sure everyone has enough staples to last them through the year. They'll only end up using them to staple your tie to the desk - and rightly so! 

3. Donating to Charity

Don’t get me wrong, we’re not against charitable donations. However when a company says that they've donated to chartity ‘on behalf’ of their employees we can't help but think they're fibbing....a bit. Do they go to the charity listing the names of each of their employees as the doners? I doubt it. They probably just name the company, send out some tweets, get lots of pats on the back then tell the employees that it was all for them i.e killing two Christmas robins with one stone – cynical but most likely true. 

4. Motivational Books

This slap in the face gift is on a par with deodorant and gym memberships. A motivational book from your boss is probably the most depressing gift an employee can receive. By doing this you’re effectively saying “Spend your Christmas break learning how to up your performance in the New Year – OR ELSE…”

5. Gift Voucher

Gift vouchers are not all bad, ones for large amounts redeemable at swanky department stores are very, very welcome. However, a low value gift card is like a punch in the eye. Don’t broadcast how little you’ve spend by immortalising the figure in print on a voucher.

6. Personal Items  

This covers a wide range of Christmas Gift fails. Of course lingerie is at the top of this list – this is in no way appropriate. Ever. It also covers things like shower gel, nail clippers and body sprays. The clues in the word, if it's for 'personal' use, it's not something that anyone wants to receive from their boss.

7. Name a Star/Adopt a Panda

Christmas is for spoiling people, spending money on intangible gifts like stars and pandas is nothing short of disappointing. If, of course, your employee is an weekend astronomer or panda fanatic feel free to ignore this post.

8. Branded Pens

In fact, make that branded anything. Trust me, your employees need a company branded umbrella like a hole in the head.  

9. The Regift

We've all got a draw full of gifts that we don’t want but feel too guilty to throw away. Whilst one man's trash can be another man's treasure, sometimes trash is just trash. Don’t inflict your own unwanted presents on your employees.

10. Zilch

Worse than all of these things is absolutely nothing. No acknowledgement of the work your employees have done, no appreciation and no well wishes for the holiday season. Z for effort

Of course we have the perfect remedy to ensure you don't fall fouls this year. Click HERE to take a look at our incredible corporate Christmas gifts for clients.

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