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Buying Gifts For The Boss? How To Pull Off A Thoughtful Leaving Gift.

I've made a hierarchy of people who are difficult to buy gifts for - I've also further meditated on the difficulties of buying a gift for your boss and created a guide to navigate this process accordingly.

Est reading time: 4m 57s

A man types on his laptop
Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash
This Christmas, I bought my nephew a Lego set. 
It was a cool one because it had Star Wars on it.
But I think he hated it.
In trying to get my head around it, I've realised that thirteen is an extortionately tricky age to buy a gift for.
Since then, I've spent a while adequately engaged in casual thought.
And now, I feel inspired to talk about other members of society who are notoriously risky to buy gifts.

I’ve elected these groups; in this order, as the definitive standing (from bottom to top)

  1. Teenagers (ages 13-19)
  2. Vague relatives (seen at funerals & weddings only)
  3. Your boss (big boss or little boss)
A Stern man sits in a chair
Photo by Dollar Gill on Unsplash

I went with the boss as the top spot because of how consequential a relationship with your boss can be. You may be on terms, but one wrong move and they hold power over your entire situation and wellbeing. They can be your friend, but never your best friend. 
Also, they hold the capacity to make your life hell. 
Stereotypes of managers in pop culture would suggest this can happen quite often. 
On the other hand, some are great. Should you land a good one, there's an equal counter-narrative suggesting that an inspiring partnership of growth can also be achieved.
It's a strange kind of relationship. 
Afterwards, I thought further about gifts.
By nature, giving someone a gift can be an intimate ritual. You may deny this, but should you apathetically commit to buying a mug, a card or voucher, even with lacklustre enthusiasm and delivered out of habit, you’re still making a gesture to be received by a human, and their perception of how they receive that gesture belongs totally to their own discretion. 
So, therefore, It’s worth doing properly, despite the stigma attached to bosses and the relationships therein. 
As an organiser, inevitably, the responsibility will always land at my doorstep, and I assume this is true for other organisers as well. 
Therefore as a form of excessive procrastination, I have mindfully stapled together this guide so that you may carefully navigate the task. 
May you avoid the potholes of frustration and anxiety that ride alongside.

I hope you will enjoy it :)

Self Heating Mug Coaster

An aesthetic latte
Photo by Blake Wisz on Unsplash

How often is your boss pulled away on an urgent call/meeting, only to return to a brew that has since soured to room temperature? 
The solution to this? A self-heating mug coaster, ensuring that coffee, tea and toddy will always be at the desired temperature. 
I found a blog just here that covers the market of self heating coasters, check them out!

Audible subscription

Audible is leading the way in the audiobook renaissance. As a leader and consumer of knowledge, or maybe even just a student of life. Audible will allow your boss to consume knowledge in a new way, which they will appreciate. 

A subscription is friendly and can be purchased right here, at a reasonable price.

Plants/Garden Voucher

Plants, like audiobooks, are also in a very green moment (see what I did there?)
Under the category of home improvement, and giving them some light responsibility post-management, a plant is a great way to show appreciation to a boss.
Also, should your boss be retiring, I’ve heard gardening is a very calming pass time…

A Years Subscription Of Their Choice

We mentioned Audible earlier, but should they be interested in things belonging to other disciplines, why not just straight-up purchase a subscription tailored to their interests? 
Go wild, I’m talking Netflix, Jams, Alcohol, Vinyl, anything! Literally, anything tailored to their interest.
Here’s a cool compiled list of every subscription ever.

A Meal Out For Two  *George’s pick: Gifts for the boss that has everything.

The Green interior of a restaurant
Photo by Louis Hansel on Unsplash

This one is cool because it moves us into the realm of experiences > physical items. This might be the way to go if you can’t pin something permanent on your boss or if you simply don’t know them intimately enough to make that call. 
I’ve suggested a meal out for two here because it’s a nice experience for them and a partner to enjoy having been released from responsibility, or just preparing to move on to a new thing. 
A break from reality if you will.

Spa Day/Voucher  *George’s pick: Gifts for the boss Female

Spa days also hit upon the route of escapism. Also, Spa days are easily the best way to provide your boss with a chance at relaxation. After all, they’re probably coming off the back of a journey filled to the brim with stresses, responsibility and whatever else the lottery of management can give to you. 

Massage Device

Let’s say you wanted to give them a method of relaxation, but didn’t want to fully commit to buying them a whole experience. How about something a little more permanent? 
Buy them a massage device. It’s like a spa day but it’s from the comfort of their own home. Also, it’s infinitely more permanent than a spa day, meaning they will be able to call upon the relaxing powers of a massage whenever they want. 
Again, here is a competent list that has scoured the internet for such a device!

ReMarkable *George’s pick: Gifts for the boss when leaving

With one eye firmly stapled to the future, ReMarkable is a digital notepad tool that they can definitely make use of in their next venture. 
It’s easiest to describe as a kindle that you can write on… Sort of a middle ground between a notepad and an etch-a-sketch…
Check it out here, I’m probably not the most competent person on the internet to be ranting about such things. 

Productivity Planner

A girl writes in her planner
Photo by Marcos Paulo Prado on Unsplash

A similar idea; to help your manager in their next role/venture/job, whatever. 
Productivity and planning are two things that come with the package of being in management. They’re also likely Organisers the same as you and I.
We know the virtues and excitement of having tools within a touching distance that can help you to increase productivity and organisation. 

Sports Tickets (Event/Team dependant) *George’s pick: Gifts for the boss Male

Back on the experience train. 
Find them their favourite sports team and purchase tickets to their next fixture/event. 
I’ve said sports tickets here, but as an experience, any event linked to their interest will be a delightful way to show appreciation and bid farewell to someone you have shared arbeiten with.

Whisky Subscription 

A glass of whiskey on a marble table
Photo by Ambitious Creative Co.  - Rick Barrett on Unsplash

Because we’re all adults and we like alcohol… I do anyway. Hey, I’m bored, not boring.
Allow them to become nerds - enable that here, like this. 
Flaviar - - Educational
Whisky tasting company - - For Gifting
Craft whisky club - - For Craft Whiskeys

Wine Subscription

The same idea really… Maybe they don’t like whiskey? 
Wanderlust Wine Club - - Budget Friendly
The Sourcing Table Wine Club - - Fine Wine
Cepage - - Best Educational


Hopefully, that could have been informative in some capacity. 
I would advise toeing the line between sentiment and professionalism; making the call based on your specific relationship with your boss.
In regards to my thoughts about consequential receivers of gifts...
Perhaps I'll make a spreadsheet and further poke the hypothesis?
Perhaps I'll publish that spreadsheet?
Maybe nobody even cared to begin with...
However, spiritually, here alone and spinning on my chair, I feel like I'm conducting good thoughts. 
That's good enough for me. 
I could use this guide myself, the next time I must purchase gifts for the boss who has everything.

Until next time.

Bored George x 

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

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