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How to create meaningful gifts for employees

When you hear the word customized in corporate gifting, it often means a product is taken off the shelf and your logo is slapped on it — end of story. But at Peace by Piece International, we work harder to create meaningful gifts for employees. When we say "customized," we truly mean that from design to fulfillment, the choices are yours to make.

Our process

It starts with a consultation. You might have brainstormed a few meaningful gifts for employees, or perhaps you've perused the 200+ products in our catalog and found a few that appeal to you. But that gift may also just be the starting point.

During your consultation, we can introduce you to the many possibilities for high-quality artisan products, often sourced from organic and/or traceable upcycled or recycled materials, and the various partner organizations behind them. Peace by Piece International works with over 30 nonprofit partners and social enterprises across the globe. These organizations were handpicked for the direct impact they have on the lives of their master artisans. We can match you with the best partner based on your corporate social responsibility (CSR) or environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals.

Meaningful gifts for employees: Idea starters

Customization: What's meaningful to you and your employees?

We will partner with you to create gifts that align with your brand. Customization may include embossing, stamping, woven labels, or screening. As you decide the direction for your employee gift, we will discuss production timelines and fulfillment. Because these items are hand-crafted, sustainably sourced products, you should generally estimate approximately four to eight weeks for turnaround time. If you're in a hurry, many of our food products and gift boxes can ship in just two weeks. We will advise you based specifically on your order.

When one client wanted to create meaningful gifts for employees to celebrate Pride Month (June), we worked with our partner Jaggery to create a joyful, fully bespoke line of rainbow-themed bags that were sourced from cargo belts, punctured bouncy castles, and other discarded materials found in landfills in India.

Communicating your impact

Examples of story cards and a gift tag to tell the story of your meaningful gifts for employees

We will help you to share the impact of your gift. Perhaps each product comes accompanied by a gift tag or card that tells the story of how that product changes lives. For example, one order of 175 branded laptop bags created 1,250 hours of living-wage work. Another order of 240 water bottles supported the collection of 2,736 kilograms of ocean-bound plastic, the equivalent of 240,000 plastic bottles. We can arrange for personal stories and interviews with partners to support your marketing and social media channels and discuss cross-branded campaigns, like the one we created with Levi's®.

It starts with you

As you consider what meaningful gifts for employees to create, think about the following:

  • What kind of social impact would your employees like to make? Perhaps it would feel good to support an environmental cause around Earth Day (April) or help to create job opportunities for women during Women's History Month (March). Perhaps it's something unique to your company or one of its initiatives, like reducing plastic waste. Think about what causes your employees would like to back or what marginalized groups they might like to elevate.
  • What kind of product would speak to what your employees are doing? Is your gift in support of a company event, like a sports sponsorship or a conference? Or will they receive this gift at home while working remotely? Whatever your employees are engaged in, see if you can tie in a gift that would make that experience more enjoyable.
  • What is your budget for gifts? Meaningful gifts for employees don't have to be the most expensive available. Consider what you're comfortable spending and any logistical concerns, such as whether the gifts will be sent together or if you'd like each item shipped separately to each employee's home. Think about how you might share the corporate expense across various budgets, such as ESG and CSR.
  • What gifts would employees value most? A May 2021 survey showed that the main benefits of giving employee gifts are strengthening relationships and making the recipient feel valued. Does your gift idea demonstrate that your employees are valued? We can share ideas of what has worked for clients since we began PbP in 2017.

Ready to make an impression?

Reach out to Peace by Piece International by emailing [email protected] or calling +1 408-684-8004 to create your own meaningful gifts for employees today!

Kim Kohatsu is the founder of Charles Ave Marketing, where she grows online engagement for businesses including Peace by Piece International. Kim is a graduate of Syracuse University, with bachelor’s degrees in advertising, political science, and French. In 2001, she was named a Syracuse University Scholar, the highest honor the university bestows on only 12 graduates per year. Kim earned her master’s degree in communications from the Adcenter (now Brandcenter) at Virginia Commonwealth University. Since 2020, Kim serves as the marketing and PR agencies chair of the Forbes Business Council. She is also a member of Mensa.

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