Friday

Gift Ideas for the Boss?

Received Friday, December 10, 2010
Photobucket I need suggestions for a Christmas present for my bosses. They always give me one weeks bonus and a few gift cards and we have a great relationship. Kids are 2 1/2 and 14 months. Any suggestions would be great. Thanks!
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We have received no less than thirty Readers asking this question so we thought you could just leave all of your ideas and suggestions for each other here in the comment section. Have Fun!

26 comments:

Anne said...

It's not usually thought appropriate to give your boss a present. That is at least the norm in the business world b/c you want to avoid even the suggestion that you're trying to curry favor or influence a superior with a present.

That being said, within a home things are slightly different. I suggest you get some great gifts for the kids and write a card to the parents wherein you express your feelings about them and the job. If you want to go one step further then I suggest you make them something like candy or cookies. Receiving a present that a subordinate spent money on can make bosses across all workplaces uncomfortable.

Elle said...

I'm giving my family a personalized ornament. I gave them one 3 years ago and they loved it. You can get it online, (or in a few stores) and they are pretty inexpensive. I'm also adding a card and some type of food item to complete the gift.

AMom said...

A gift for the boss? Umm, no. give gifts to the kids, that is it, I would not buy a gift for the boss. For the children yes.

MAnanny said...

I have always given a thoughtful gift--just as long as you spend more thought than money. Anything to do with the kids--like a framed photo ornament with a place a of cookies/card. Or . . .and this will be my second year doing this, making a calender with the kid's pictures in it. You could also make a photo book/same idea. Basically, they're going to love anything that stars their children in it :) Good for you--I think a thoughtful gift goes a long way toward cultivating a good relationship. Things are different in a home than in a secular workplace.

P.S., I always get my kids great gifts too--thoughtful/educational/not overboard, but nice.

bostonnanny said...

I spend a quite a bit on my family. I got professional portraits of their son taken and brought two very nice frames that match their decor.

I don't think gifts are required for parents but I love xmas and the family i work for is very good to me. With that said I also know that they won't be giving me a bonus or a gift that expensive. Its really the thought that counts.

Emily said...

I agree that you shouldn't really buy a present for your bosses--however, I do think it's kind of the nanny's role to help the children make a gift for their parents that can be a special surprise for them on Christmas. In the past I've done photo albums, and special works of art like sculptures and special framed paintings that the kids work really hard on.

The parents will love things that you did with the kids that took time & thought much more than they might like a present you bought for them.

j. said...

I usually give pictures of the kids and something for the kids. This year, the kids get some books i thought they enjoy and I got some picture books made from the kids with pictures from the last year.
They're both kinda young, so I can't really have them make something.

Village said...

You get what you pay for, and this advice is free.

GIFT DOWN, not up. It's appropriate for you to gift the children, and for the parents to gift you. Give the parents a card only. Include a note indicating what great employers they are, and use at least one specific example of their kindness or thoughtfulness toward you during the past year.

Pardon me for using a noun as a verb. I took dramatic license.

PortlandNanny said...

I usually give my Bosses two movie tickets in a homemade card, with a note saying that I will sit for one weekend evening for free so they can go to a movie.
OR I will take the kids to a get a Christmas Portrait. I buy a plain white frame and let the kids decorate it.

Chrissy said...

I don't really give to the parents either. The kids, yes. I do write a nice card and last year I made them a basket of homemade goodies, but that was sort of for the whole family. For the mom's birthday (last month) I took the kids to a piant-your-own-pottery place and had them paint things for her, but I made it look like it was from the kids (she of course knew I had it done),

nanny2 said...

I agree with those who say gifts for the children but not the adults. Anything given to the parents should be a project of some sort that is from their children. I think they will appreciate it way more (you investing time and initiative to help the kids make a gift) and it will be less awkward than receiving a gift from their employee.

Texas Nanny said...

I gift to my bosses. Last year I got my bosses a homemade gift basket with two mugs, gourmet hot chocolate, a personalized ornament, and some bags of cookies I made.

This year I'm planning to do the same gift basket idea, but with coffee instead of hot chocolate (because we talk about coffee and I always drink theirs), and probably a loaf of banana bread in addition to the cookies.

I feel like it's only polite for me to get MB and DB a gift because I usually work with Work-at-Home moms/parents. We don't just see each other 1 hour a day as I arrive and leave, we spend all day together. We make decisions together, and I go along to all the babies' doctors appointments with both of them. We are a team, and my salary makes it possible for them to get a salary AND spend time with their kids every day.

NannyinSTL said...

I helped the kids give their parents gifts. Every year since I started working for this family (2007) I take photos of the kids and the kids help me organize them into a calendar (walgreens or walmart.com has the template). The kids then wrap it up and give it to their parents. I also give the parents one free night of baby-sitting. I realize I lose money in that deal, but it's something little I can do and let's them know that I WANT to spend time with their kids, and at the same time, they get out and have a break.

Anonymous said...

Sorry about the anonomous post... my phone only let's me chose anonomous!

I think it is appropriate to gift the children always... even if it is spmething very small. As far as parents go, I think it is really your call. I have always gifted the parents or in some cases I got a "family gift" for the parents and children combined (popcorn maker, popcorn bowls, and some DVD's for family movie night). But it depends on how close your relationship is with the parents. This year I am getting my MB a coffee mug with gift card for her favorite coffee shop and I also took some pics of her baby holding a sign that says "I love you" and I am going to frame them for her desk at work. I also made some handprint reindeer ornanments for the treem etc. All in all I am spending maybe 40 dollars which I think is more than do-able! Use your best jundgement but I agree with the others on kid-made gifts being the best :)

I love my Nanny! said...

I'm going to echo the other sentiments here and say getting a gift from my nanny would feel very awkward! However, I'm extremely sentimental and would really appreciate her going through the trouble with my kids to make something for me. A picture calender is nice (I need a new one every year anyway!), a special photo album of pics I haven't seen yet that the nanny has taken of my kids (that would obviously take a little planning and need to be done ahead of time!), or one year I received a coffee mug with a picture my child had drawn super-imposed on it! (That one is my favorite!) But again, some of these ideas take some planning and need to have been done a bit earlier. But I'm sure whatever you come up with that is lovingly done with the kids will be appreciated!

WhatPortlandNannySaid said...

A homemade coupon for a night of babysitting. Portland Nanny's idea is really cute. And help the children make gifts for the parents.

Lila said...

We have a generous nanny who always gets us and the children (and the grandparents!) gifts for the holidays. We would prefer that she just spend her hard-earned money on herself but if she insisted, the best gift would be a night of sitting. My husband and I rarely go out without the kids and would use the night for a special date.

MainerNanny said...

In the past I have given my employers small gifts -a nice piece of pottery or a scrapbook of their children's adventures over the year.
I always give gifts to the children as well - a new book, or game.
I take the children to a local paint-your-own pottery place and they paint Christmas Tree ornaments for their parents' gift.

NJnanny said...

I tend to always give my bosses something. This year a bottle of wine :) Oh, and I'm sure also, a free night of babysitting. I never go to extravagant. I always buy something big and great for the kids though!

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

I am on kinda on the fence about free babysitting. On one hand it seems very kind, thoughtful and generous on your part and there is no direct money being spent. (I think a gift that a nanny spends her hard-earned money on would be super awkward for the parents involved.) But on the other hand, if I worked at Target or Home Depot, I would NEVER offer to work four hours free just as a X-mas gift to my supervisor/boss. I only would do so if I could get major brownie points which they may consider once my annual bonus comes. In other words, I would only do it as a bribe to put myself above the other employees.
As others have said, thought is more happily accepted than something monetary. Perhaps cookies (if you like to bake) or a nice ornament (if you do crafts for a hobby.) Otherwise do not feel obligated one way or another. Unless of course, you are really close to your bosses and have an almost family relationship, then perhaps a gift card to Starbucks or their fave restaurant. Now who wouldn't appreciate that??! No one has mentioned this before, but I think if your family has already more than enough material things, perhaps a donation in their name to their favorite cause? I am a big animal advocate for homeless animals in animal shelters, so if I was well-off and had all my material needs satisfied, I would be more than giddy of my nanny made a donation in mine (or her) name to a local animal shelter!!!

Rose P said...

I have been with the same family for 4 years now and every year I get them a picture frame and I have a collage of photos (online) from throughout the year. It means a lot to them and it's cool to see how much they've grown and she does display them for all to see!! I buy the frames (they look really nice!) at Hobby Lobby and they are almost always 50% off- it saves me a lot of money but also looks good! Definitely recommend it to anyone wanting to get them something 'small'!

Ohio Nanny said...

I am with Just My Two Cents.

Initially, I thought a free night of babysitting so they could go out sans children would be a great offering. But then I started to think of the position that may put them in. Say, two months down the road, they wanna redeem it, it may be uncomfortable to come and say, "hey, can you sit on Saturday? We'd like to redeem our free babysitting." It sorta puts the responsibility on them to approach ME about the gift given, and have to 'ask' for it. As a parent myself, I would be uncomfortable doing this, even if someone offered.

So now I am re-thinking. I think the bottle of wine or champagne is a nice idea. And one they can use New Year's Eve!

Lila said...

OhioNanny, we just ask our nanny if she can sit on a certain night and then, if she can, we tell her that we will redeem her thoughtful gift certificate that night. It doesn't have to be awkward. A bottle of champagne or wine is also lovely if they are regular drinkers. We aren't and the bottles are stacking up so we'll be giving away any wine gifts received this year.

ATLnanny said...

This year for Christmas I went online and made a desk calendar of the little girl and added 2-3 pics on each month. I talked to a few of my friends with children and they agreed something homemade or some kind of picture. One idea that is cheap is getting a set of glass coasters that display pictures and add a few candid shots of the children. As far as the children go, I bought a book, hand-painted puzzle, and a create-your-own plate.

NashvilleNany said...

I have found myself with this question too..

I started sitting for this family about a month ago and it's only about 4 or 5 hours a week. The Child (3 yrs) has tons of toys, so I don't want to just give him something for the sake of giving him something. They gave me a gift card (less then 2 hours of pay in value), do I reciprocate? Send a Thank you note?

Anonymous said...

I've been working as a nanny for over 10yrs. I pretty much do the same thing; always buy something for the kids (and I work with mutiples so it's always at least $100 spent.) If it's only been a few months, I do a card and homemade ornament or something. If it's been close to a year, or they've been incredibly understanding or generous I'll do a gift basket with some wine. At the 2+yr mark of me working for them I do a nice bottle of champagne. Mostly I stick to kid-created or centered gifts, but I do like to throw something in for the adults. I do the same for their birthdays (one yr I casted all the feet and mounted it for dad's office) and for mom, movie tickets, restaurant cards or a gift basket with stuff I know she likes.
It really depends on your bosses and the relationship you have with them, and your comfort level and budget. I never overstretch my budget.
If you're really unsure, you can always wait and give them a gift on Bosses Day, which falls in November. I always do and several of my clients have been pleasantly surprised.