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Smart consumer tips and strategies from Eyewitness News Online



Office Giving

"I gave at the office." That line may be all too true when it comes to collections for coworkers... especially during the holiday season. Sometimes the reason for giving is really worthwhile. But, other times, it's hard not to resent the request for donations. Below are some tips on how to handle office gifts.

Gift Giving Tips

Check This! Set a comfort level when it comes to giving... and don't exceed it.

Check This! If you can't afford money, offer something that might be more valuable, like your time. For example, offer to bake a cake for an office celebration or volunteer to be the person who shops.

Check This! If you're tired of the constant cash requests, try offering these solutions to your coworkers:

>>Suggest that everybody contribute 5 or 10 dollars at the beginning of each month to be put into a "gift pool," which can be used throughout the month.

>>Set a price range for each gift, or agree on a standard present.

Smart tip!Bright Idea...

If you happen to be the person in charge of the collection, be sure everyone who gives is thanked. Otherwise, they may feel their contribution is taken for granted.

Party Etiquette

Gifts are just one part of the holiday season to consider at work. Many offices have holiday parties, and it's crucial you understand the proper etiquette:

>> Keep in mind that the party is a business function... even though music is playing, food and alcohol are being served, and people are laughing.

>>If your office party is mandatory, don't skip it. However, that doesn't mean you have to be there the entire time, unless it's held during work hours.

>>If the party is away from the office, get directions so you can arrive on time.

>>Don't immediately rush to the food or bar. Socialize with your coworkers and boss.

>> When introduced to someone, look that person in the eye and greet them with a firm handshake.

>>Balance your food and drink in your left hand, so your right hand will be free and clean for handshakes.

>>Eat and drink in moderation.

>>Find out the appropriate attire before the party. If the party is formal or cocktail, women should wear conservative dresses. Leave the sexy, vibrant, and flashy ones for social affairs, not work parties.

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