A Gift Buying Guide for Independent Entrepreneurs
With the holidays here, small business owners aren’t only making sales; some are making purchases of gifts for staff, business partners and mentors. When it comes to picking a perfect, business appropriate gift, there are a few elements that should influence the type of gift that you get, those being the level of familiarity you have with the recipient, their relationship to you and your business, and how much you know about their personal preferences. Giving a gift during the holidays, even a small gift, demonstrates your commitment to a successful relationship and can be a nice way to show your partners that you value them.
The gift you get should reflect your relationship with the recipient. The more time you spend with someone, the more you start to pick up on their personal preferences. When it comes to buying gifts, you can use all that you have observed to help you purchase a gift that reflects their tastes on a deeper level. When you work closely with your employees or team leaders, you will have no shortage of opportunities to pick up on their habits, but sometimes it is appropriate to purchase a thank you gift for a mentor or new partner about whose preferences you know only a little. Fortunately, in the age of social media, it is possible to perform some research by perusing the likes listed on their profiles. Based on what they write about themselves and the pages that they share and like, you can get a sense of the types of gifts that they would be most excited about receiving.
Gauge your relationship to decide what type of gift is most appropriate. When you buy a gift within a business context, it is important to not overstep boundaries by giving something either too extravagant or intimate that can make the recipient uncomfortable. Food and drink is generally a safe bet for this reason, as you can show off what you know about the taste of your partners while purchasing something that is nice, not too expensive and not going to ruffle any feathers or be misconstrued. Your gifts for employees can be geared towards helping them accomplish professional goals. For example, if you know that one of your team members is working hard towards gaining a management position, then giving them a a book on management strategy or the biography of a business leader can show them that you are supportive of their efforts and appreciate them.
Consider giving your products as gifts to show them off to strategic partners. Giving the gift of your products can help you highlight their great qualities and showcase what you do to your strategic partners. You may even with to give products that have not been released yet to the general public to promote a feeling of exclusivity that those who are involved with your business on a higher level will appreciate. Giving a great business gift is all about recognizing the individual while reinforcing the shared bond you have. When you make it a point to give the best of what your business has to offer, that is communicated to the valuable partners who you work with.
Photo Credit to Allen Sheffield on Flickr