Gift giving: five top tips for SMEs

Wednesday December 7, 2022

After another year of hard work, you may be thinking of giving your team a token of your appreciation this Christmas.

After all, gifts are a great way to say thank you.

If you need a helping hand deciding what and how to give this year, we have compiled our five top tips for gift giving in the workplace to ensure you stay on the nice list!

Top tips for gifting…

  1. Don’t leave anyone out

If you’re giving gifts, make sure you give something to everyone. If your team finds out that only one or two people received something from you, they may feel left out. It could also appear to them that you play favourites, and their resentment could last far longer than the festive season.

  1. Consider those less fortunate

Christmas is a time for giving and helping those who are less fortunate – especially with the current cost of living crisis and hardship in the world. How about making a donation to a chosen charity instead? This could be something you involve your team in too, as you could ask them all to vote on which charity they would like the donation to go to.

  1. Be inclusive and don’t make assumptions

Not everyone celebrates Christmas, so steering clear of things like tree ornaments and gifts that have religious connections may be wise. If you are giving gifts, something more general could be a good way to go.

  1. Choose a thoughtful gift

Thoughtful gifts are always a winner. Food gifts, particularly chocolate, are often welcome but keep dietary requirements and allergies in mind. Alcohol and wine can also be appreciated, but don’t give it to someone who doesn’t or can’t drink. You could also consider buying something for the workplace that everyone could enjoy instead – perhaps your team would love a new coffee machine! There’s no harm in being imaginative and thinking about what your team would really appreciate.

  1. Tread carefully with humour

Although you spend a lot of time with your employees, a funny gift may make them feel uncomfortable. If you’re unsure about someone’s sense of humour or if you think that a gift might be offensive to anyone in your team, steer well clear. The presents you give should be appropriate to show in the workplace, not something risqué.

You may need to pay tax…

Even though it is the most wonderful time of the year, The Revenue commissioners still have rules which are applied to giving gifts.

You can give a gift/bonus of up to €1000 to each employee, but it can only be one per employee per year, and the first gift is the one they will allow to be tax free. If you have paid a bonus already in the year, the next one will be taxed, even if the first one was for €50.

Gifts are for life, not just for Christmas

However, gift giving doesn’t just have to be limited to Christmas. It can benefit your business any time of the year.

A recent survey from Huggg and YouGov found that 34% of those who had recently received a gift said they wanted to go above and beyond in their role.

Occasionally giving your team gifts can improve staff motivation, strengthen professional relationships, boost workplace culture and make your staff happy.

To attract and retain talent, businesses are having to pull out all the stops. Making your workplace attractive to future and current employees can be difficult, but you can make a start by creating a culture where everyone knows that their hard work will be recognised and appreciated by managers.

It is important to have a consistent and fair approach to gifting. Detailing this in a clear reward and recognition policy is the best way to ensure this.

Present predicaments?

Having issues with gifting in your workplace?

If you are unsure about how to reward your staff, need support drafting a clear policy, or have HR questions about present exchanges in your workplace, get in touch with your local HR Dept.

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