Capping off what has been a bumpy 2020, this holiday season is going to feel different for many of us. And that’s because we are different: The pandemic has changed our lives—and as a result, our new perspectives, habits and behaviors will shape the way we approach the holidays, from the ways we’ll celebrate, to the gifts we’ll choose for our family, friends, employees, and colleagues.
A recent CNBC article offers a pulse on the state of gift-giving in America: “This holiday season, shoppers aren’t planning on glitzy and gift-oriented celebrations. Instead, many are preparing for smaller gatherings, reining in spending and directing more of their dollars toward retailers that share similar values during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new survey by Accenture. Jill Standish, who leads Accenture’s retail practice, said the global health crisis has inspired Americans to reflect on the season differently.”
That thoughtful, intention-driven attitude has carried over to corporate celebrations and gift-giving. It’s a decidedly different approach to the season this year, with many companies opting for virtual gatherings or skipping holiday parties altogether. But even with traditional events canceled, you can still engage, recognize and celebrate your team, clients and vendors in ways that are meaningful and relevant. Here are trending ideas for how you can make that happen:
Wrap It Up. Transitioning the annual party spend to a mindful appreciation package for your employees and customers is a thoughtful, timely gesture that celebrates the season in a unique way. At Shamrock, we work with customers to make these custom kits truly personal interactions—they can include a curated assortment of items—or even an invitation to “shop” your online company store—along with a hand-written note.
Self-care Gifting. With many of us still social distancing and spending a lot of time at home, self-care gifts are a wonderful way to show appreciation and empathy for those who may be struggling to juggle work, school and family commitments. Choose from gifts like home-spa kits, meditation books, a Bluetooth speaker for listening to music, a leather journal or adult coloring books—or choose products that you’ve found to better navigate life in quarantine. These gifts show that you care about their personal well-being.
Do-Good Giving. Now more than ever, there is a desire to see brands acting for good— consumers want to feel good about the brands they buy from. Nearly 70% of consumers in the U.S. and Canada think it is important that a brand is sustainable or eco-friendly, according to a new study by IBM and the National Retail Federation. Choosing items that are environmentally responsible or buying from brands that are socially conscious are thoughtful ways to gift while giving back and making a larger impact. (The Shamrock Cares program offers a complete line of on-trend eco-friendly and sustainable gift ideas.)
Similarly, making a donation to a non-profit on behalf of your employees and customers is another way to spread good while raising awareness for a cause or organization. Again—a personal touch goes a long way—consider including a hand-written invitation to support the organization with a link and/or campaign login information.
PRO TIP: Don’t wait until the last minute to order your holiday gifts! The pandemic has caused supply chain strain with out-of-stock situations and longer delivery times. Shamrock’s value is that we source, kit and ship holiday gifts from one of our fulfillment centers, simplifying the process while helping you engage with and celebrate your employees and clients this season.
How will you celebrate the holiday at work this year? Are you gifting? I’d love your input: Join the conversation on our Shamrock Facebook page. And as always, if you need help sourcing the right gifts for your employees or customers, reach out to me directly at Tberry@shamrockcompanies.net.