Should you buy a gift for your boss? It's that time of year again. The season of giving. However, does everyone deserve a gift? Should a person who makes more than you receive a gift that you bought with your less than income?
The obvious answer is NO. According to office etiquette, upper management should not benefit in any way from their staff. This includes receiving gifts at Christmastime. Although, it is acceptable for bosses to give their staff presents to show appreciation.
Of course, it depends on the rules of your office environment. And no, I'm not talking about policy and procedures. The professional/personal interactions of your office environment will determine whether or not you give your boss a gift.
If you have a small office space of five or fewer employees, and everyone has a close-knit relationship with each other, including the boss, then buy a gift. But I would suggest checking with the other staff before purchasing. Simply asking should you buy a gift for your boss can really help.
If the office has more than five on staff and is definitely part of a corporation, then I would say no. As I stated earlier, the manager or upper management staff should not gain from lower level employees, no matter the occasion. It is ethically wrong and with most companies, against policy.
However, there are some office environments, despite ethics or policy, that still would get the boss a gift. Usually, this is when the staff get together in secret and decide to give the boss a gift. One person will ask “who all wants to participate,” and if unanimous, then decide how much each will give for the gift.
This is fine if everyone agrees. However, if there an assumption that all are willing to participate, but you don't want to, then there is a problem.
Again, bosses should not receive gifts from employees. Yet even if they should, you are under no obligation to participate in buying the boss a gift if you do not want to. So politely decline and simply not show up to the office gift exchange or just skip work that day.
On the other hand, if you opt out, it looks bad for you. It shows you that you have issues with management, or that you’re disagreeable, or anti-social, and possibly other negative connotations.
A suggestion for whatever your choice and office environment, give no more than five dollars. Maybe suggest buying a card and everyone signing it. Bring baked goods, that way everyone, not just the boss, gets some. Home make your gift, so you don't have to spend any money.
Whatever the holidays at work bring, enjoy them. 😊