If you are one of the thousands of offices around the country that is running a secret Santa this Christmas, you’ve probably been wondering what on earth to buy for the person that you have picked out of the hat.
The concept of secret Santa is hugely popular in offices, workplaces, colleges and even amongst families across the Western World and, although there are several variations on the concept, the premise remains the same. Put simply, you pick a name out of a hat and buy a present for that person, usually within a pre-agreed budget, keeping your identity a secret in the process.
Of course, the secret Santa is actually fraught with danger. One inappropriate present could land you in some hot water, so we have come up with a few simple ‘Do’s and Don’ts to make sure that you get a great secret Santa gift.
Stick to the budget
Whatever has been agreed before hand, make sure that you try and keep under it. The odd penny over or under might go unnoticed but if you go too far above or below your budget, it might not go down too well with your fellow Santa’s.
It’s so easy to get something quick and basic without relatively little thought. After all, the supermarket aisle ends are full of ‘stocking fillers’, so try and get something a little different. Are you buying for someone in accounts? Then this ‘I love spreadsheets’ mug should raise a smile whilst one of the guys in IT might appreciate this Stressberry.
Try to inject some fun into your gift
Of course, this depends on the atmosphere in the office but secret Santa is supposed to be fun. Try and have a bit of a joke with your recipient or at least, give them something that they’ll be encouraged to use. This Hang Man mug, for example, should offer a few minutes of excitement at least!
Get to know about your pick
The above “do’s” rely on one key aspect – you need to get to know who you are buying for. Of course, you can’t make it obvious but a few innocuous water cooler conversations should at least give you a clue as to what makes your recipient tick.
Give the game away!
The whole idea of a secret Santa is that it is supposed to be a secret! Different groups will have different rules on when, if ever, the Santa’s are revealed but don’t spoil the fun by letting slip on who you are buying for.
Get something offensive
Remember that you’ve still got to work with these people! If you are buying a gift for a work colleague, don’t buy them something that is going to embarrass them in front of their work colleagues. Most people can take a joke but remember to consider how people might react to your gift.
Remember the deadline for your gift! Some offices use the last day before the holiday, other’s use the day of the Christmas party and some just nominate a random date. Whatever it is, don’t forget it!
Be the office Scrooge!
If there’s one way to guarantee that you’ll be getting a bag of mint humbugs and a lump of coal, it’s by being the office Scrooge! Embrace the fun and gift your gift with a big smile on your face. It won’t hurt – honest!