Even though it may not feel like it, the holidays are almost upon us. Soon leaves will begin to change color, ugly yet snuggly festive sweaters will be the height of fashion and all foods will come with a dash of pumpkin spice. For now, though, grasp at those lasts rays of summer! Enjoy a BBQ or picnic one last time before the holiday insanity is upon us. But after you do, it is time to begin planning because winter is coming even if your last name isn’t Snow. Today, we're talking about best corporate wine gifts.
There are two types of people when it comes to buying holiday gifts. There are those who start planning in March to decide what presents they will buy everyone in the coming year. They call themselves “prudent planners” instead of “borderline obsessive Type-A over achievers.” They have everything wrapped and ready to go by Thanksgiving at the latest. These are the people wearing scarves in August and drinking 2% half-caff pumpkin spice lattes all day. No doubt, they are also the people that use an entire roll of tape on each box so that you feel you should add “successfully opened Mom’s gift in under fifteen minutes” to your CV.
Then there are the rest of us who go into gift giving season the same way college students handle, well, everything: rushed, last minute and with large amounts of caffeine-fueled panic. The always stellar plan of ordering whatever we can find online at 11:00pm that will ship for next day delivery is, technically, an option. But it is not really the best one, unless you like spending more on shipping than the gift itself and being unsure the next day what it was you actually bought.
There is also the option of raiding your house for re-gifting ideas. Time to go digging into the guest bedroom closet to see what you can find! It’s like Indiana Jones and the Closet of Misfit Re-gifts. Who doesn’t love to receive a seashell picture frame or holiday themed vase from the neighbors that you’re pretty sure you gave them two years ago? Or perhaps a dust covered bottle of wine that may or may not be vinegar at this point? Is Pinot Grigio supposed to be that shade of apricot? Eh, it’s probably OK. They will never know the difference. (Right?)
Last resort is stopping by any store, even a gas station, that is open on your way to a holiday party to try and find something, anything at all that is acceptable to give as token.
Typically with eleventh hour gifting whether online, excavated from your guest bedroom closet or from a gas station, the result is the same: a gift basket of sorts that involves cheap candles and cheaper bottles of wine.
But hey- if all else fails, there is always fruit cake. There are actually pumpkin spice fruit cakes available these days. Yum!
While it may not sound like it, these are actually the best case scenarios. Family, friends and even neighbors will most likely be polite enough to overlook your faux pas, chalk it up to you being busy or think “that’s just Dave! He’s so
cheap wacky.” Or maybe you will be getting your festive vase back at next years’ party. Either way.
No friends, all of that is child’s play compared to what really matters in terms of holiday presents. The paramount challenge is deciding what to get your work colleagues (cue ominous, holiday-themed, music).
It is a nearly impossible scenario: buying a meaningful present for someone who you have very little personal knowledge of, but who is integral to your professional success. You can’t work Gifting for Dummies in this scenario. Just stay out of that guest bedroom closet all together.
This present has to be the real deal if you want to properly show your appreciation and stand out from the crowd. The Back of the Closet Wine is not going to fly here- this is the big leagues.
Here is the enigma: the gift has to be thoughtful, appropriately priced, unique and memorable. Bonus points if it is socially conscious and supports a small business as those two factors are becoming more and more important in todays’ business world.
So go ahead, give that bottle of 2012 Pinot Grigio to your most important client. Call it “orange wine”. They’re going to love it and your ample wine knowledge. Solid decision making, friend!
Or there is another option. The gift that keeps on giving and is a no brainer for almost everyone: good, boutique wine. This is an important distinction to make. As a population in general we are becoming more and more educated about wine. So Rule #1 in purchasing wine for a client or colleague is don’t buy them something they can go to any local store and get themselves. Do not do it. Odds are, they have purchased that exact bottle once, twice, maybe many times. They know how much you spent and that you did not take the time to get them something special.
This present needs to be memorable, so introducing your colleagues to their new favorite small production, high quality wine will make you stand out. Everyone is looking for the hidden gems of the wine world and you, friend, have the inside track! There is a great way to achieve the perfect professional gift. Cellar Angels recently introduced a Corporate Wine Gift Program, solving all of the worlds’ problems. Wine really does make everything better. Incredible.
While that may be just the slightest over-exaggeration, Cellar Angels’ new Corporate Gift program can solve almost any gifting problems this holiday season. Life is busy and with a program like this the planning is already taken care of for you. Work smarter, not harder. The best part? There is no additional charge, unlike that last minute online purchase with a $30 next day shipping fee.
Buying a wine gift for someone else on the Cellar Angels site is easy-peasy. You can put in your colleagues’ information and your selection will be shipped to them. If you have some personal knowledge of the recipient this is the best option as you can select for them the charity to which proceeds go. Sorry, Email Etiquette 101 seminars are not considered charitable organizations.
Of course if the idea of selecting the wine and charity for the recipient is daunting there is always the option of buying a wine gift card. This is great for the particular and querulous recipient. Take the guess work out and let them get something they will absolutely love. Your gift to them in this case is really the generosity of introducing them to the incredible experience of discovering new boutique wines through Cellar Angels.
For your most important clients and colleagues it is important to go the extra mile. You want them to remember your generosity more than once. A fantastic way to develop a deeper long term professional relationship is by signing them up for the Cellar Angels Wine Club. Extra credit if you sign up as well so you can compare notes on the wines each month. To stand out in the corporate world it is important to get creative and think outside the box. This is a subtle and classy way to do so. Take it from me; I have only once purchased holiday gifts from a gas station. Maybe.
But what if none of these options hits the nail on the head? What if you have a lot of people to buy for? Or people with very specific tastes? Maybe you just want to make sure that each recipient is shown just how important they are. In this case Cellar Angels will design a customized wine gift option specifically for your needs. Again, at no extra charge! This is amazing in the world today where it is not uncommon to see a Service Fee, Processing Fee and are also expected to tip. It is practically necessary to auction your first born child just to order some pumpkin spice pizza delivery.
On top of all of this, Cellar Angels will include a personalized note into each and every gift sent. Thoughtful? Check. Appropriately priced? Check. Unique, memorable, socially conscious and supports small businesses? Check, check, check and check. This is a no brainer for anyone who has more than once tried to figure out how to clone themselves just to get everything done.
With high touch, personalized service featuring boutique fine wine even Sinéad O’Connor would agree that nothing compares to you, Cellar Angels. Not a single haphazard gift basket can hold a candle to what you offer. Not even the best of the back of the guest bedroom closet re-gifted candles.
Gift giving advice and good laughs courtesy of guest blogger and sommelier, Meghan Vandette