No matter what background a person comes from, receiving a gift is always a nice gesture. It means that someone has taken the time to think about them and the meaning they hold in their life.
Corporate gift giving is important over the holidays. With all the stress of scheduling appointments, meeting sales goals and marketing products, it’s easy for employees to feel underappreciated. Clients, too, sometimes get less attention than intended. A small gift is a great reminder of your appreciation to the people who make your business a success.
Recognizing Cultural Differences When Gift Giving
Many clienteles and workforces are diverse, which can make it difficult to choose the perfect gift. Sending a card that says “Merry Christmas” may be well-intentioned but awkward for a client who doesn’t celebrate Christmas. A holiday gift exchange may sound like a fun idea but bothersome for someone who doesn’t want to participate.
Is there a better alternative? Absolutely! Here are some ideas on how to recognize clients and employees from different cultures during the holiday season.
Do this: Branded Merchandise, Instead of: Gifts
Rather than trying to find the perfect gift, show your clients and employees a little love by giving them a branded item. This could be a cozy hoodie, a stainless steel travel mug or a rolling suitcase. Stick to products that are relevant, useful and high in quality.
Branded merchandise comes in all types, allowing you to spend more on your top tier clients or higher performing employees. It also works in your favor by promoting your brand and strengthening brand ties.
Do this: Redeemable Points at the Company Store, Instead of: Gift Cards
Gift cards are a popular go-to for corporate offices. However, gift cards can quickly run through your budget and feel impersonal to the recipient. A better alternative is to give points or gift certificates to your online store. Of course, you’ll need a company store to do this, but you can always get a web store set up through Inkwell Global Marketing.
Online company stores allow you to choose the promotional items that fit your audience. Everything is approved by you, so you don’t have to worry about getting merchandise that makes your logo or color scheme look different. By giving employees and clients redeemable points, they get the freedom to pick the apparel or office supplies of their choice.
Do this: Holiday Bonus or Time Off, Instead of: Holiday Party
Holiday parties are another well-intentioned idea, but they can be awkward for those who don’t celebrate the holidays or are naturally shy. According to a survey by Randstad, 90% of employees said they would rather receive a holiday bonus or day off instead of a holiday party. Well, if that isn’t telling you something!
So, give employees what they want – a well-deserved bonus or day off. Some companies are slower during this time of the year, so giving a day off isn’t a problem. If your company is busy, you can opt for holiday bonuses instead, or wait until January or February for days off. Just know that most people prefer time off around the holidays.
Don’t skip the corporate gift giving this year, but do put some extra thought into it. This is a great opportunity to strengthen brand loyalty. You don’t want to miss the mark by giving a gift that is irrelevant to the people that matter most to your business.