Due to unfortunate global circumstances, companies around the world were forced to shut down their offices and pivot to a work-from-home model. This meant pausing team lunches, scrapping in-person evaluations, abandoning water cooler chats about the latest TV shows, and saying goodbye to awards ceremonies. With global conditions improving, companies are asking employees to return back to the office – and they’re winning. For some employees, going back to the office can elicit mixed emotions and as an employer it’s important to consider those feelings of dread. Getting great results in the workplace is a two-way street – managers and executives have an obligation to make the transition back to the office welcoming and meaningful.
If employees don’t feel validated when they return, they can become disengaged in the first few weeks back, which can cause issues to your bottom line and, more importantly, company morale. One of the best ways to keep employees engaged as work from home is phased out is to treat them with personalized corporate gifts upon their return to the office.
What Corporate Gifts Are Right for Your Employees?
When thinking of corporate gifts for employees, you can go two routes: personal or team/division-focused. If you have a small team or company, it would be smart to go the personal route. A personalized corporate gift, regardless of what it is, should specifically speak to the employee’s interests and likes. If that’s a difficult endeavour, don’t fret. One of the best ways to make corporate gifts feel personal is to add an engraving that features the recipient’s name, work title, and your company’s logo.
If you manage a large team, division, or fleet, it’s a tall task to find a gift that’s personal to each employee. In most cases, you’ll have to opt for multiple variations of one gift to make everyone feel included. The best way to personalize these gifts is with an engraving that just creates a 1:1 sense of appreciation. Consider an encouraging quote that speaks about teamwork or overcoming adversity. To add a cherry on top, add the team/division’s title, as well as your company logo.
While personalization is key for employee corporate gifts, it’s important to not forget the value of the gift itself. As a manager, you have to create the conversation surrounding the impending office return. If your team is excited to come back to the office, it’s a cause for celebration. If your workers are hesitant, it’s your job to ease them back in to this major change. Whatever your team is feeling, you have a responsibility to ensure your unique corporate gifts reflect that. While personalized trophies and awards are great options for ceremonies or recognition events, it’s unlikely that employees will appreciate them upon return.
Instead, you’ll have to think of gifts that add genuine value to their return.
Flourish Employee Desks with Engraved Corporate Gifts
A fantastic route to take is to surprise employees with corporate gifts for their desks. Imagine how pleased they’ll feel when their old desks are filled with new stationary and personalized tokens of appreciation. Consider gifting employees engraved pens upon their return. For a small team, engrave each person’s name. Large division? You’ll do fine with just your team or division’s name, though adding each employee’s name to each personalized pen would be a great choice. Because your workers are back in the office, it’s likely that other companies you work with are back as well, which means more in-person meetings. With people coming in and out of the office, it’s important for potential clients to know exactly who they’re working it. Treat each employee with a business card holder for their desk. Engrave each business card holder with the recipient’s name, the team’s name, and your company’s name. They’ll be filled with pride when a client picks up a new card from their engraved business card holder. Don’t forget to commission business cards on behalf of your staff!
Another great option to consider is to replace everyone’s old, smelly mugs with brand new drinkware. Glass gifts like engraved mugs are a simple but effective tool to welcome employees back into the office. Engrave each mug with the company’s logo and the recipient’s name so everyone knows whose coffee not to touch. If glass gifts/drinkware intrigue you, why not send employees home with a premium litre decanter on their first day back? It’ll set the mood for a preppy and cheery return, and it’s a gift that all your employees will enjoy using the moment they get home. While you’re at it, replace the boardroom’s old water jug with a brand new, company-branded pitcher. Replacing old office fixtures with brand new products will make employees realize that their managers are putting great efforts into making the new office environment fresher and more exciting.
Surprise Employees with Luxury Corporate Gifts
While working from home, employees likely made significant changes to their lifestyle, such as moving further away from the office. Returning to the office is a compromise, one that they might not be too excited about. If you want to properly thank your employees for returning to the office, treat their return with luxury corporate gifts. How about surprising each employee with a Waterford crystal clock? It’s a special corporate gift that they can either leave on their desk or take home.
While trophies and awards aren’t the best gift to give to returning employees, how about something that doubles as a showpiece? Consider gifting your employees premium art glass awards with bases that are engraved with ‘thank you’ messages. All of our art glass awards are individually made and can stand toe-to-toe with some of the finest modern works of art that populate museums. Invite employees to take these awards for their home office. If your workplace is operating with a hybrid model, think about adding some charm to home offices. Classy but trendy bookends are a great and unique corporate gift that you can give to workers for their shelves at homes. Engrave your employee’s name, as well as a heartfelt message to make the bookend all the more special.
Employees returning to the office can be challenging but it’s a herculean task worth combatting. Just remember how exciting in-person lunches and recognition awards ceremonies were. Sooner or later, returning to the office will feel completely normal. To speed up that process and keep employees engaged, don’t forget the benefit that welcome gifts have.