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Your Guide to Buying Gifts for Coworkers During the Holidays

December 8th, 2016 Comments off
Cropped image of business people exchanging Christmas presents in the office

Shopping for loved ones leading up to the holidays can be difficult: It needs to be meaningful to show you listen, priced just right and handled with the perfect amount of care.

Buying gifts for your coworkers goes a little differently. If you are able to find anything at all, it’s either the first thing that strikes you as funny at a gift shop or a re-wrapped gag gift from many years prior.

A new CareerBuilder survey of workers and employers from across the country found that 69 percent of employers plan to throw a holiday party this year. Twenty–two percent of employees plan to buy a gift for coworkers, and 73 percent expect to spend no more than $25 on a gift. The survey also identifies a few points to remember as we near the holidays.

People Don’t Spend Much on Coworkers

So, you shouldn’t either! Don’t be the guy who gets a special someone a new camera-phone if there is a suggested spending limit. A third of all workers (33 percent) will cap their spending at $10 on holiday gifts for the office, and 11 percent will spend $5 or less. If everyone follows these guidelines, no one will feel neglected.

It’s OK to be Funny, Just Don’t Be Weird

The CareerBuilder survey compiled a list of the most unusual gifts employees had received during the holidays from coworkers. These highlights are memorable for all the wrong reasons:

  • Two left-handed gloves
  • Coconut bra
  • Jar of gravy
  • A fake lottery ticket
  • A real stuffed duck
  • Toilet paper that looked like money
  • Post-it Notes
  • Dish detergent
  • A pen holder that looks like a crime scene victim
  • A comic book of an obscure movie
  • A handmade ornament for a sports team the recipient had never heard of
  • A singing chicken
  • A whip

Remember, There’s Always Charity

Nearly half of all employers (48 percent), plan to make charitable donations this holiday season. So, if you’re worried about participating in the sure-to-be-awkward white elephant grab bag, but you’re in the giving mood, start a charitable collection on behalf of the company.

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