Have you ever been given a gift that’s been wrapped in its plastic shopping bag with the tag still on it? We aim to give gifts that make others feel good, appreciated, and valued. But regardless of what’s inside, sometimes the careless delivery devalues the impact and meaning behind the gift. When talking about corporate events, gifts often come into play as a way to make attendees feel valued and appreciated by those who are giving it. In the same way you give a gift to a friend or family member, presentation carries a lot of value.
In a recent paper by Chan and Mogilner of Rotman University, they found that “when recipients receive an experience, regardless of whether they share in that experience with the gift-giver, they feel more connected to the gift giver as a result of it, compared to receiving a material gift." If you do decide to give a gift, make it an experience for the recipient (this doesn’t include leaving gifts on the table for the taking) which will ensure deeper feelings of connection.
But perhaps your organization gives cash or gift cards and maybe the decision-makers don’t see the value in providing an actual gift. There is evidence to show that cash is not always king. A recent IRF Participant Study published in November 2015, mentions that “Travel and Experiences beat out cash on average as a desired large award. Like consumers, employees judge the value of a brand or award by the seamlessness and exceptionality of the experience."
So what can you do with this information? As a planner, you can start by looking for small, but impactful ways to make the gift process interactive. By evaluating the process with a perspective for making memories instead of just giving away free “stuff”, you have the potential to impact organizational relationships for years to come. If you need help, look for a reputable vendor with many years of experience, and be sure their service offerings follow the gifting best practices.
If you’re in the gift planning stage of you next event, check out Maui Jim Corporate Gifts and see why we are The World’s Most Memorable Gift Experience®. We’ve been creating meaningful memories for over 15 years. Feel free to reach us at 1-800-614-6790 or [email protected].
About the Author
Brett Hatch is the Global Senior Director and founder of the Maui Jim corporate gifts division. A visionary leader with 20 years of experience in the incentive travel and promotional products industries, Brett is active in key incentive industry organizations including IMA (including 2015 IMA President’s Award recipient), IRF (current member of the Board of Trustees), MPI, PPAI, SITE. When he’s not sharing the Maui Jim ‘Aloha’ or engaged in industry events, you can find Brett on a golf course.