Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Gift Giving at Work

Some of the most difficult questions about gift giving concern the workplace. Exchanging gifts with business associates is an area of behavior in which careful thought and prudence are especially important.
Rule 1: Extravagance shows bad manners and represents poor strategy.
Rule 2: Modesty and quality are the key words.
The gift should be personal enough to tell the recipient that you gave some thought to it. You might have to talk to someone’s spouse or secretary to learn what a person’s hobbies are or what kind of music, books, or foods would make a special treat.

The Ease of Registries

Establishing an electronic gift registry is a bit more complicated than simply setting up a registry at an upscale department store. When you set up an e-registry, you can indicate the sort of gifts you would like to receive. The registry will contact your circle of family and friends to get some ideas about their interests and preferences when it comes to gifts they would like to receive. Those contacted can also provide hints about what to buy for others on your list.
Selecting a registry:
  • Make sure the registry includes a large number of retailers to give you and others a wide range of choices.
  • Select a registry that notifies your family and friends of your wish list so that you don’t appear overly avaricious.
  • Make sure the items purchased are shipped directly from the retailer, instead of through the registry or another entity. You don’t want the gift going through too many hands before it arrives.

E-commerce and Registries Etiquette

Selecting, purchasing, and sending gifts electronically can be a wonderful convenience, but you must do some thinking first.
Before placing the order, decide whether to have the gift sent to you, which will allow you to wrap and personalize it, or directly to the recipient. If you choose the latter, here are some things to consider:
  • Find a reputable, reliable e-tailer, one you’ve used previously or that has been recommended by friends.
  • Have the item gift-wrapped. Most e-tailers provide this service.
  • Send a card or note telling the recipient that something is on it way.
  • If you are the recipient, call or e-mail right away to say thank you and to let the person know the gift has arrived. You must then follow up with a thank-you note.