Holiday Gift Ideas for Your Employees, Boss and Clients

Dec 2, 2010
5 Min Read

Now that Thanksgiving is over, the holiday shopping season has officially begun. But deciding what to buy for all those close to you can be downright paralyzing with all the choices that are out there. It can be even more difficult to shop for those we know professionally but maybe we don’t know so well personally. Here is a starting point for brainstorming your holiday gift list:

For Your Employees

One of my favorite gift ideas for an employee is to give a business book. The trick is to personalize your selection so that the person will want to read the book you choose.

  • For the aspiring leader: The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership: Follow Them and People Will Follow You
  • For the people person: Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose
  • For the brainy one: How We Decide
  • For the over-achiever: Outliers
  • For the creative: Made to Stick
  • For the newly promoted: The First 90 Days: Critical Success Strategies for New Leaders at All Levels
  • For any manager: Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High
  • For the team leader: The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable

For more books like this, check out the 800-CEO-READ and the best-seller lists.

For Your Boss

It can be difficult to decide what an appropriate present is for the boss. How much do you spend? Do you let others know? Moreover, it can alienate co-workers if they were not planning to purchase a gift. One way to get around all this is to do a group gift from the team.

For example, you can make a gift basket. You the organizer will handle purchasing the basket and taking care of assembling it, while the others on the team each bring one or two items to put in the basket. This is especially appreciated when the boss has a family with whom he or she can share the items in the basket.

Just a few of the things ideal for a gift basket:

  • Wine
  • Wine Stopper
  • Decorative Napkins
  • Candles
  • Chocolate
  • Candy Canes
  • Ornaments
  • Gift Card
  • Fruit
  • Coasters
  • Coffee

For Your Clients

The holiday season is a good time to not only show appreciation, but also to remind your clients why they do business with you. You can gift items that will help your client further their agenda and their business. You can also gift items that will keep your company and your brand at the forefront of their mind. Or ideally, both.

If you have just a few clients, you’ll want to personalize the gift – the aforementioned gift basket, something that relates to their hobby, or a ticket to their favorite sports team event.  But if you have more than a handful of clients, such an approach may not be worth your time or money. Instead, you can give something with a personalized feel, but a wholesale price tag. My favorite website for mass-produced branded items is Here are a few items from their site that I love and almost anyone can use:

What are you giving this year? What are you hoping to receive?

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