Dear Mrs. Fields,
Help! Bosses Day is coming up and I’m at a loss. How do I pay tribute to my boss without seeming like a brown nosing, apple polisher? What’s an appropriate gift, how much should I spend on it, and what’s the best way to give it?
Perplexed in Portland
Dear Perplexed in Portland,
You are not alone. Many people find the issue of Bosses Day uncomfortably perplexing for exactly the reasons you expressed. However, I have a few ideas that I think will help you in selecting a perfect gift:
1. Remember that gifting is about relationships, not price tags. An appropriate gift for your boss is one that you can afford, is thoughtfully selected, and could be opened in front of anyone without a worry. Avoid anything over-the-top in price or taste. Your gift should provoke a sincere, “Thank you!” and not an uncomfortable, “You shouldn’t have.” I’ve found that a tin of gourmet cookies is always a perfect gift—appropriate, thoughtful, and always appreciated. But, of course, I’m biased.
2. If office politics seem especially tricky—and sometimes they are—consider coordinating a group gift with your co-workers, which builds a sense of camaraderie rather than one-upsmanship. (Some of my favorite group gift ideas can be found here.) You could also coordinate a potluck luncheon, or an after-hours dinner or cocktail hour to treat your boss and include everyone else.
3. Remember that a gift without a card seems more like an obligation, so don’t forget to take time to write a thoughtful note. Keep in mind that bosses are usually the first to get a complaint and the last to get a compliment, so take a moment to let your boss know what you truly appreciate about him or her. All of our gourmet gifts include a free gift enclosure you can personalize with your own message. We also have an assortment of wonderful greeting cards for a small additional charge.
Good luck and happy gifting!
Don’t forget! Bosses Day is Monday, October 17th. We’re offering a special discount—20% off all items—to our wonderful blog readers. Simply use code 11TEG at checkout. Offer good through 10/18/11.