What's a unique gift idea for a male business associate?
July 31, 2008 9:21 AM   Subscribe

What would make a unique thank you gift for someone who has really helped my business?

My husband and I run a media business. Recently, while covering some events, some people went out of their way to help us. I would like to send them a thank you gift however I am not sure what to send. These are males so flowers won't be a good gift. Something related to a hobby won't work - these guys are big time collectors and anything I send them would be a duplicate of something in their collection. Any ideas on what makes a unique gift to say thank you?
posted by bodgy to Human Relations (18 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I wouldn't rule out flowers. Just a single high quality orchid in a bud vase.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:26 AM on July 31, 2008

Men, you say? How about a box of bacon lollypops?
posted by spilon at 9:29 AM on July 31, 2008

Bacon lollypops sound awesome. How about a nice box of artisan chocolates (Christopher Elbow) or chocolate covered strawberries? I sent them to my insurance agent after he pulled some strings for me and he was totally knocked out. Edible Arrangements has a really great selection. Adding a bottle of champagne would be a nice touch if you want to take it up a notch.
posted by inquisitrix at 9:39 AM on July 31, 2008

A thank you card. If they're in town, take them out to lunch at a nice place as a thank you. That would help develop the relationship more.

If it's fire and forget, and you don't really know them, then chocolates are the closest thing to a universal gift. If they don't like it, or are diabetic, they can easily re-gift it.
posted by abdulf at 10:18 AM on July 31, 2008

In keeping with bacon, how about a subscription to the Bacon of the Month Club?

It is a bit on the spendy side, but you didn't provide a budget...

I know that I've had my fingers crossed (hoping to receive a subscription as a gift) ever since I heard of it.
posted by terpia at 10:40 AM on July 31, 2008

Maybe a donation to something related to their hobby on their behalf?

Or cookies. (Cheryl's cookies has good cookies and they're individually wrapped!)
posted by dpx.mfx at 10:48 AM on July 31, 2008

An engraved bottle of Jonny Walker Blue. They'll laser etch your thanks right on the bottle.
posted by fixedgear at 10:58 AM on July 31, 2008

I vote for remote control sailboats but I guess that's a bit hobbyish.
posted by albatross5000 at 11:12 AM on July 31, 2008

I hate to say it, due to it's lack of originality, but how about personalized ipods! The shuffle would be kind of cool as a gift. I mean I have an ipod already, but I would still thinking getting it would be a nice token of appreciation.
posted by MiggySawdust at 12:06 PM on July 31, 2008

Please remember that if you don't know someone well, it's bad etiquette to send gifts that could trigger extreme distaste. If even one of those people is a vegetarian, this gift will go down in flames. Are you listening, baconites?
posted by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] at 12:06 PM on July 31, 2008

Response by poster: Is it National Bacon Day? What's up with all of the bacon!? :)

As far as budget, I'd like to keep it in the $50 range.
posted by bodgy at 12:18 PM on July 31, 2008

National Amusements (cinema chain) does a gift-card thing that includes two movie passes, a certificate for a large popcorn and two large drinks. And it's greeting-card sized. I've received those before, and they're very memorable.
posted by jbickers at 12:41 PM on July 31, 2008

If they truly must have bacon, there's always the Vosges bacon chocolate bar.

Kidding about the bacon. If you don't know them well, I think it's hard to find a "perfect gift"—you might find something you'd love, but they'd hate. (This thread's bacon obsession may be a good example?)

I'd send them something simple and neutral, but with a nice personal (but not too personal) story: "I'm enclosing a gift certificate to [restaurant in their area]. It's where my husband and I made the decision to go into the media business," or, "I hope you enjoy the attached daffodils. Shortly after I'd opened my media business, a close friend sent me a bouquet of daffodils to say good luck, and the next day we landed a big contract. May you enjoy the same luck!" Or something of that sort, emphasizing the 'thought' behind the gift over the gift itself.
posted by fogster at 1:37 PM on July 31, 2008

I received an engraved Leatherman as a groomsman's thank you gift and use it often. Thought that was a super cool thing to give to a bunch of guys with different tastes.
posted by bottlerocket at 2:47 PM on July 31, 2008

Man, I am still hoping for a Pocket Ref or some variant. You could also get them something weirdly useful like the Action Hero Manual with Leatherman tool? I am always looking for quirky but useful things and hey, you just never know when you NEED to fight off a great white shark.
posted by jadepearl at 4:48 PM on July 31, 2008

I've given bamboo plants out as gifts and it always goes over well. It's easy to care for and lasts a long time, kinda nice because as long as the plant is still around they have something to remember you by.
posted by BrnP84 at 5:09 PM on July 31, 2008

How about a laser etched moleskin notebook...you can pick one of their designs or come up with your own. If they can all have the same design, you save money on the artwork.

posted by rvrlvr at 6:02 PM on July 31, 2008

A single mention of delicious bacon in a thread tends to bring out the bacon enthusiast in even the most health-conscious omnivores I know. I have nothing to back this up, but it just seems to happen that way (my perception).

Regardless of your final decision, heed [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST]'s caution against giving meat to those who aren't fans.

Another option: customized Visa gift cards. They're like gift certificates, but can be used on anything. Despite what some people might say about the lack of personal touch or thoughtfulness that gift cards or gift certificates might convey, customizing the cards with a thank you message or hilarious picture makes them fun and practical.
posted by terpia at 7:31 PM on July 31, 2008

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