The Art of Gifting

Unless you’re nine years old, we shouldn’t have to remind you how important it is to give a gift when the time calls for it. But did you know that often the best time to dote on someone is when they least expect it? Follow these tips to give gifts that colleagues and clients actually appreciate.

No. 1 – Make it Meaningful

Don’t waste your money on Starbucks gift cards or cupcakes. Those don’t make the grade because they don’t show you put any thought into it. Apply the platinum rule by treating others how they want to be treated, and look for a gift that really means something to them. We find great success in going through old correspondence for clues, thinking back to shared experiences, or pulling ideas out of old conversations.

No. 2 – Keep it Practical

If you can find a gift they can actually use in their life, it will be more impactful. What does the person you are gifting like and need? What are their hobbies? Where do they like to travel? If you can get them something more than a candle, you’ll likely stand out from the crowd.

No. 3 – Used Regularly

One of the best gifts we’ve received is a coffee frother from IKEA. It cost $5.99 and has no logo on it. We used it every day for five years, and every day we thought of the person who gave it to us. What else can you give that keeps giving? Don’t get a bottle of wine, give wine glasses. Don’t give food, give a cookbook. And so on. 

No. 4 – Off-Beat Timing

Don’t give the gift when everyone else is giving them one. Sure you should honor a birthday or milestone, and do that with a genuine card or quality time. When it comes to gifts, though, we like to surprise and delight with something unexpected.

No. 5 – Encourage Sharing

While you should give the gift for the sake of generosity and helpfulness, it doesn’t hurt your personal brand if their colleagues and collaborators see your thoughtfulness. Make the packaging awesome, and the gift could be shared on Instagram for others to see. Just be sure not to make others jealous by favoring one of your clients over others.

Julian Leaver