Giving Amazing Gifts at Work
Whether it's between a boss and a team, peer to peer, or a department-wide situation, a well executed gift can go a long way for employee morale. Too often a gift will come in the shape of a luncheon, gift card, T-shirt, or a group signed photo. While a modest gesture, a more intentional and thoughtful gift fills teammates, colleagues, and supervisors with pride in themselves, their teams, and their employer.
For over a year the matrixed team shared some long hours, tears, and many laughs through the high profile project. The program manager, who had kept them all organized and on track, would soon leave for a promotion. She deserved something better than a card signed by the group.
They wanted her to go out with a laugh and in brainstorming what kind of superhero she would be, the idea was born. The Comic Con obsessed "Taskmastress" would get her own comic book cover. We captured some important details to include (villains, sponsor) and created a draft that they loved. The fully illustrated design delivered the levity they were looking for while paying tribute to her hard work in a way only those close to her could have conceived.
While the typical holiday luncheon was always appreciated it had been a particularly tough year and a very turbulent final quarter. The team was burned out and needed more than just a pep talk and a meal.
The teammates each submitted peer praise (thinking it was for feedback), we combined it with the leader's feedback, and then memorialized it into an art piece for each teammate. We shaped the word cloud in their initial with carefully selected typography to match the sentiment. It was a bespoke emblem that left several misty-eyed during the presentation. Years later, the pieces can still be seen hanging with pride above their desks.
Revered Boss' Farewell
Giving a farewell gift to a boss can be tricky - trying to keep it simple but still capture the sentiment from the team. Being authentic yet doing something more than signing a card.
The directors shared how their boss had impacted them. Each had a different view which made me think of box of chocolates and snowflakes. There was a glass bowl of inscribed stones in his office that he never talked about, but his directors knew it was a treasured collection. The idea was literally hiding in plain sight.
During his last staff meeting they each told their story, then added their rock to expand his collection. The normally stoic leader choked back tears, not realizing how he'd helped each of them and had his own "It's a Wonderful Life" moment.