Showing how much you appreciate your colleagues is so important in a good give and take relationship. People will remember others that take the time to ecknowledge them. This week, we will be discussing some creative gift ideas for colleagues.
Colleagues will be divided into two categories: A person who works with you at the same level in the same company. Also known as workmate, teammate, partner, etc… This could be a manager you coordinate with from a company you work with on a regular basis. Or, a peer owner who owns a business you may use on a regular basis.
Where as working with subcontractors could be people who work for you to help your clients. These people usually are soleproprietors or entrepreneurs that wish to be called subcontractor and have their own clients in addition to you.
I divided the gift ideas into these two categories to make it clearer on what to give to each of these coworkers.
Remember to stay away from the common gift giving items – mugs, calendars, key chains, notepads, etc… Everyone has so many of these items so try not to add to their clutter.
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Gifts for Colleagues:
Colleagues might enjoy hobby gifts. Think about the conversations you had with your colleagues. Was there anything that they enjoyed talking about? Did they mention activities they do with their kids? It may give you direction on what to give them.
Things like food always is nicely received. Make sure you purchase a general gift unless you know for sure they are willing to take risks and try something new. Pick fruit or nut baskets that don’t have too much unusual stuff in them. No one wants to waste food.
Make the gifts unique but convenient to the colleague’s location.
I remember years ago, my boss gave everyone a gift card for a free ham to Honey Baked Hams Co., but what they didn’t realized is that I had to travel over a half an hour to pick up mine. <sigh>
Consider the recipients’ dietary restrictions.
Unique muffin or cupcake gift packs are nice gifts for colleagues. Especially if you are seeing them before the holidays. Make sure you take into account the dietary restrictions they may have before buying these items.
Another option is to create DIY mason jar dry ingredients mixes. They are also a creative way to share food items. If you find a recipe you like, you can make it yourself in large quantities and save even more. I made a few of them over the years. here’s one I made recently to give to family, clients, and friends. HOMEMADE FRENCH VANILLA CHAI TEA MIX GIFT JAR DIY
Now let’s discuss the gifts for subcontractors.
Gifts for Subcontractors:
Most likely you don’t always see your subcontractors so keeping their gifts small and easier to ship will save you time and money.
I had clients send me things like a locally made fruit platter. Others gave me funds so I can pick my charity. Read this article “The Act of Giving Makes a Nice Gift if done correctly” from the New York Times for more advice on the topic.
You can also gift these subcontractors gifts from online stores. Some of my favorite stores to give unique gifts are Uncommongoods.com and Etsy.com. You can purchase them and then ship it directly to them.
There are also places to ship things like wine or beer. If you live in PA you will need to ship wine through the Pennsylvania Liquor Control website for recipients in Pennsylvania.
Can I deduct colleague or subcontractor gifts on my tax return?
Keep in mind that you can only deduct $25.00 per person as a gift in a calendar year. Read more about the details on the IRS website. If you wish to give to these people run it by your accountant to see how much is OK to spend and how you should do it.
Well, there you have it, I hope this helped you decide what creative gift you want to give to your colleague and subcontractor. If you want more ideas, feel free to visit our other gift ideas posts.