Finding gifts for your boss can be a little tricky. Do you love your boss and feel the need to get him a gift to show your appreciation? Do you just need something to appease the “Boss Appreciation Day” requirements? Do you need to kiss up to them to get that promotion? Or, do you still look for a beautiful Christmas gift for your boss? No matter whether you love or hate him/her, you will likely have to get them a gift during your tenure at your workplace. Getting them a gift can be hard. After all, you may not know a single thing about their likes. Regardless of your familiarity, this list will give you some great ideas of what to sit on their desk.
Look, I know. It has become a joke at this point and when everyone is the best boss, well, no-one is. You don’t have to mean it, and they know that you don’t, but a mug is a functional gift. This gift may be coming around as a comedy gift for them.
The Executive Mini-Sandbox – Your boss loves the beach and dream of laying on the shores day in and day out? Get them the Mini-Sandbox. Their daydreams will become somewhat realer as they take the mini rake and waste time away, imagine themselves lying in the miniature beach chair, and build small sandcastles.
We have all seen them, and maybe purchased one or two. Subscription boxes seem to be all the rage lately. Anything can come in them from food, to geek ware, to fishing equipment. Find their interest and there will likely be a box for them. This can be a little pricey if you go for a monthly box option, but that raise may be worth it.
Science is cool right? Give your boss something that will inevitably end up driving you crazy. The endless clicking that will occur when they are bored may drive you batty, but when it is “Bring Your Kids to Work Day” you can get sweet revenge. Prep your kid like a witness on a trial, to go in their office and never let that cradle stop.
Tired of them making you work? Make them! These little trees can be insanely difficult to take care of from what I have heard. Sure, they are pretty, but for under 50 bucks you can get them a lovely piece of plant life that will take all of their effort to keep it alive. Sure, it may not be that hard, and they may find it easy. Either way, it will look nice if it grows.
A Book – Fiction, Non-Fiction, Romance, or Erotica… They all may have their place on your boss’ desk. A good book is hard to beat as a gift for anyone. Maybe even sneak in a “Dummies Guide to Being a Good Boss” in there and it can benefit you. Well, maybe not if getting a raise is what you are trying for.
Whiskey glasses – Is your boss a borderline alcoholic? Nothing could make them happier than a nice container their favorite poison. Maybe they should keep the bottle closed until after the work day ends, but if not, it may make a great picture for holiday cards around the office. Just make sure they aren’t an angry drunk. You wouldn’t want them to fire the whole IT Department because they forgot their ex’s Facebook password.
Speaking of drinks, maybe a nice set of barware tools is up their alley. Be sure you drop a line to come over to their house and let them show off their skills to you. After all, no one charges for drinks in their home and being slightly inebriated is a great time to ask for that promotion.
Tired of them conveniently “forgetting their wallet” every time that you go out for lunch? Me too. Trick them into paying by getting a gift card to their favorite place across the street. Sure, they may skip out on you and take Susan from HR, but it is worth a shot. If nothing else, you get to have a nice and quiet lunch to yourself.
Regardless of their gender, almost everyone loves chocolates. I’m not talking about a Hershey bar here. Go out and get them some good chocolate. Domestic or imported, they won’t care, just make sure it is good. Maybe get another and give it to your significant other as well. Sugar is like a drug and chocolate may be more addictive on its own.
Look, it sounds dumb, but how many times has your favorite pen been stolen? You know that deep seeded anger that sets in? Your boss has felt it too. Get them a set of nice pens. Those that you think, “How could anyone pay that much for a pen?” Get those. Your boss will love it and then when you inevitably steal one or two back it is like getting yourself one.
Oh that wretched smell of their coffee breath that hits you when you open the office door. It makes those meetings so much worse. Why not get them a nice scented candle that would mask the smell and make those dreadful meetings so much more bearable. Find a scent that they like and hopefully, they keep it lit. Or… you could hide the coffee, but that is probably going to make more enemies than friends.
Laptop Tray – Your boss work from home often? Thank them for staying out of your hair by making it even easier and more comfortable for them to do so. Nothing says thanks for being a good boss by doing everything you can to keep them out of the office. Throw some spin on it and tell them you want them to see their family more and that they just work to hard. Make it seem like you are looking out for them when we all know that you are just trying to get some peace.
Would your boss rather be the headlining act at the local garage band festival and not sitting in their office? What says “Step down and let me take your place” like a piece of hardware that lets them make guitar picks out of all of the company stationary. If nothing else, it will give the janitorial service a reason to hate you when they are picking up odd shaped paper shreds everywhere.
Does your boss only wear Hawaiian print shirts from beach shop he stops at every year during his vacation? Maybe not, but being around someone five days a week gives you a good sense of their style. Maybe pick them up a shirt that you think they would like. Buy one a size or two smaller than you know they wear as well. It will make them feel good when they have to exchange it.
Maybe I’m just hungry (I am), but I would love for someone to gift me their favorite brand of salsa or something unique they picked up at Trader Joe’s over the weekend. I am sure your boss would feel the same. It may sit in their cupboard for a year before they crack it open, but when they do you will certainly be on their mind. Heck, they may even regret firing you for reading this list while at work.
Whats better than a painting to adorn the walls of their office? Maybe a cityscape, a smart saying, a piece of abstract art, anything really to spice up that white wall space that he refuse to decorate. Don’t spend a lot. I’m not saying buy an original Picasso here, but a beautiful piece from your local home decor store will suffice.
Does you boss have more pictures of their family around the office than paperwork? Look! You may think their family is incredibly unattractive and wish they would take those photos off the wall, but with this gift, you can, at least, admire the frame. Surprisingly, frames can be pretty artsy for not a lot of money on the internet.
No, not with Susan from HR, but with their significant other. Two movie tickets and an Olive Garden gift card can go a long way in their personal lives. A happy life at home has to equal a happy life in the office right? Maybe not, but, at least, it will give them a reason to leave the office an hour early. You may even be able to sneak out after them. Just wait till they are out of the parking lot.
Not a 100 piece thing from the dollar store. You know those puzzles that you see in the science section of a department store. Yeah, the ones that drive you insane because you can’t figure it out. That is a great gift. It will keep them entertained for a few hours while you try and catch a 10-minute nap at your desk. Some are pretty entertaining, and you may keep it for yourself. I recommend keeping it in the box until your boss gets it.
Nothing says, “Hey boss, I’m trying over here” like a tie. He may never wear it, but at least, he can add it to his collection. There are two routes to go with these. A nice usable tie, or a good ole’ comedy tie. You know the one with Stewie Griffin cursing out a pancake on it? That one will get a chuckle and sit in a closet for a long time, but at least, you tried. Alternatively, you can buy him a pair of luxury Bresciani socks.
Guys, this one may not be for us. Ladies, your boss always wear too much makeup? Maybe get her some more to add to the collection. Maybe she doesn’t wear enough. Nothing drops a hint like a pack of high-end mascara as a gift. This could offend if you go that route, so maybe it isn’t the best idea. I guess that would depend on your relationship.
Everyone loves a massage. A day at a spa typically isn’t that expensive. While I wouldn’t schedule it for them, a gift card would be nice. They may schedule it on a work day. The good thing about that is it is hard to email and call the office when they are in the mud bath and to get a cucumber facial. Enjoy the relaxed day.
Apples, oranges, and bananas are sure to brighten their day. Get there early and drop it off on their desk. Attach a note that says thanks and you are sure to get some brownie points for the day. These even come prepackaged a lot of times, so it doesn’t require a lot of time on your part.
Engrave it with some witty saying or just the boss’ name. Either way, it is a unique gift that they have likely not gotten before. It may not be the best idea if they already have a nameplate, but if not there is a hole in the front of the desk waiting to be filled. There are a lot of styles of name plates that can be picked up online.
It isn’t for everyone but if your boss seems like the type of person who enjoys a nice long evening relaxing in a bath this would be a good gift. They come in a variety of scents and homeopathic purposes. I am a huge fan, and a lot of people love these things too. Either way, they may not have had one before, and it is a different experience.
These are a very different type of calendar. Much more unique than that bland desk calendar they never use. Plus, they can revert to childhood and start playing with blocks again. That will keep them in a better mood.
Is your boss a major fan of a specific show, director, or actor? There are all kinds of collections online that are specific to almost everything. I am particularly fond of the Quentin Tarantino collection or the 1966 Batman series that just came out a few years ago. No matter what their show or their Hollywood idol, everyone loves taking the time to sit back and rewatch a favorite.
You know the one. Maybe you boss is a huge Dr. Who fan. Get them a t-shirt or a collectible item. Fandom has reached a height that I never thought it could reach in the mainstream, and you might as well take advantage of it. It seems that almost everyone is a super fan of some show. It may take a little bit to do some recon and see if they already have the items, but if you pick the right one it can mean a ton to your boss and your future.
Your boss may not seem like the type to be in the woods and get lost, but a good survival tool is something that everyone should have. You never know what life may bring and being able to survive overnight in a not-so-great situation may happen to them. Even if it doesn’t, they can use it to put together that new dresser they got from Ikea.
Most of us love traveling somewhere and seeing something new. Certainly that is the same for your boss. Go and grab a travel guide for your state. You will be surprised by the things that there are to do that you never knew of. I have spent my whole life in my State and find something new all the time that I didn’t know existed.
In the same vein as a travel guide, a National Parks book is something that everyone should have. After all, our taxes pay for them so why not learn about them and visit. Most of us live in days of a drive to a few parks, and they are always a good way to spend a weekend.
For that trip to the national forest your boss may end up poorly prepared and forget to bring enough water for their hikes. Fortunately, many new water filtration items work amazingly well. You will be surprised at what these tools can make drinkable and pure water out of. They aren’t extremely expensive either.
I have lost so many pairs of these over the years that it isn’t funny anymore. It would seriously surprise you have many pairs I have had and then almost immediately misplaced. I always find a great gift to be a nice high-quality set of headphones/earbuds. Luckily for you, great headphones don’t have to cost hundreds. Dreaminex has a nice pair of bluetooth capable earbuds.
Chances are your boss is really into professional or college sports. The NFL is the most watched thing on TV nearly every week. If you aren’t a huge sports fan, you likely know someone who is, and they will be more than happy to hit up a sports memorabilia store with you. Some items can be pretty pricey, but a nice team-centric football is a good decoration for the office.
Speaking of sports and the alcoholic tendencies of your boss, a good tailgating set is a necessity. These can come with many different items and it is up to you to decide exactly what your boss would take the most use of. A few I have seen even have a small grill. You could probably even sneak an invite to the tailgate party and after a few drinks, ask for that raise that you so desperately deserve.
Oh no, your tailgate party is getting rained on, and no one knew it was going to rain! Luckily, you got your boss a waterproof blanket that is perfect for this situation. Sure, you are freezing and wet, but that blanket you bought them is keeping them and their food dry. This is a cool thing that I am going to get for myself. Seems like every time I go to a sporting event, it rains. I am possibly just bad luck.
Okay, I know, you are sick of sport gift ideas, but this is the last one. A nice four pack of tickets for your boss and their family to go to the big game next weekend could be a great gift. It could be pricey, but it may be worth it. Sites like StubHub and others often have tickets for a decent price and can make this much more doable.
Chances are your overpaid underworked boss is going on a trip somewhere this year while you are barely able to afford rent. Why not make their trip more comfortable for them and get a nice inflatable travel headrest. Nothing makes a flight more enjoyable than not waking up to realize you have fallen asleep, laid your head on the person next to you, and drooled all over their shirt. Luckily, they were nice enough to no wake you up.
A beautiful phone case is a great gift for anyone. I would recommend a Lifeproof case. They are virtually indestructible and waterproof. If not that, a customized case, or one that highlights their newest obsession may be a good choice. Or you could get one that goes along with our next gift.
I wish I had one of these right now. Seriously, I’ve been up for like 4 hours, and my phone is already dead. This device can be infinitely helpful as a desk ornament.
This gift is probably helpful for your boss’ tailgate party, or any occasion. It is pretty cool and can be found online with just a short google search. If nothing else, it will remind them of the college days where they spent all of their time at a frat party and not taking that business class that was required. Somehow they got that degree, though, and it put them in charge of the office.
Is your boss always late? Get them this mug and it will save them a few minutes in the morning. The mug brews coffee in just a few minutes, and they can walk in every morning to time with a nice, fresh brewed cup of coffee.
Save your boss the trouble of missing that meeting that you scheduled for them last week with this reusable planner. It is much handier for me than a desk calendar or one of those bulky year planners that I never seem to fill up.
Is your boss always complaining about fitness? A FitBit may be the perfect gift for them. Tracking all of the steps that they take to your desk to yell at you has never been so easy. They can watch their heartbeat rise as the anger inside them boils when you tell them it isn’t your fault.
Nothing is worse than being stuck on the side of the road with nothing in the car to help. A good emergency backpack would be a great gift. Most come with a set of jumper cables, a poncho, flashlight, and some other important things. These are usually pretty cheap and would make a great gift for someone who just got a new car and may not have one sitting in the back seat.
Some of us treat our pets better than our kids. Likely, your boss does. The best gift is sometimes something for someone else in their family, and a pet is a great way in. Get the cat a scratching post, the dog a chew toy and the hamster a wheel.
You never know when you need a flashlight. These super bright LED flashlights can come in handy more than you know. Blinding an assailant, finding that remote that is on the couch, or that lost HDMI chord behind the entertainment center. Now if only your boss knew where the keys were.
You see them all the time around the holidays. They are these cute little boxes with a mug and some hot cocoa mix. It may not be the best or most extravagant gift for your boss, but if you want just barely to make it through this gift, it is a way to go.
I may be beating the proverbial dead horse here, but a lot of people would love an engraved flask. A friend of mine just got one with his name engraved on it, and I have to say, it is kind of cool. I don’t know if he is taking it to the office, and your boss probably shouldn’t, but if they do it isn’t your fault.
I don’t know what has been going on lately, but I have seen a bunch of these beef jerky stores opens recently. If I were to receive some of that as a gift, I don’t think I would be disappointed. I am sure your boss won’t be either. It doesn’t have to be beef, but a good snack food is always appreciated.
I don’t know what your boss is into, but there are a lot of specialty lunch boxes out there right now. Like, some do pretty cool stuff and could be a nice gift. Of course, your boss has to bring their lunch to work, and a lot of people don’t do that, but maybe it is because they haven’t found that right lunchbox yet. It is worth a try.
This is a combination of the engraved flask and the mug from earlier in the article. There are plenty of sites that will allow you to get a mug engraved with whatever you would like. Maybe their name is what you would go with or an inside joke. Whatever you choose I think a mug is on the lower end of gifts, but some people like them.
If your boss has a pool this is pretty awesome. Although it is called a cocktail table, it is just blow up raft that has cup holders and a place for some chips or something. It would not be the best buy for a family with children who are jumping in the pool, but in relatively calm water it is a nice thing to have.
If your boss is the fishing type they would love a lure. Fishing is big in my family and often lures are given in our stockings or just as random gifts. Fishermen may be picky about the type of lures that they use regularly, but when the fish aren’t biting anything is worth having in the tackle.
I am not the most informed about hunting so if you are looking for specifics gift ideas here, I may not be the one that you would want to look to. Headlamps are unquestionably important, ammo, camouflage gear, etc.
I don’t mean that $2 one at the dollar store. I mean a pretty rustic or wooden set. Chess may not be everyone’s favorite game, but a nice chess board can class up an office like very few other things. You can drop a pretty penny on one of these sets, so make sure it is worth it.
Along the lines of classing up the office, a beautiful rustic style globe will do a lot. You could get one that fits on the desk or a larger one that stands in the corner. Either way, the globe will surely suit the need of world domination your boss feels.
If your boss is a cook a nice BBQ set is a great gift. There are plenty of different sets on Amazon and other sites. A good one will include a beautiful collection of stainless steel tools to make BBQing comfortable.
While they are out BBQing at the next company picnic your boss will be wearing your love across their chest in the fancy new “Best Boss” apron that you are giving to them. It may even match the “Best Boss” mug you got them earlier.
This is a pretty cool device that hooks under your desk. I don’t know how comfortable or even if there is much of a point to it, but it could be a unique gift for the boss.
This is one for the next after hours team building exercise that we all love. Get it for your boss and recommend that you use it. It is a good time and a good ice breaker for the meeting. It will get a little messy, but what is some whipped cream to the face before going over the latest projections.
If your boss is always throwing things around in his office, maybe it is time for him to get this item. I have not personally used it, but it supposedly bounces back at you when thrown against a wall in a perfect spiral.
It would require a unique understanding to purchase your boss a workout equipment, but if you have one of those relationships this could be a fascinating item for them. I’m not going to lie; I want one.