Retirement Gifts Many people want to mark the retirement of a valued colleague with a gift. Retirement gifts can be sentimental or…
Many people want to mark the retirement of a valued colleague with a gift. Retirement gifts can be sentimental or fun. A gift can recognize professional achievements or refer to future retirement plans. Gift givers could also include a heartfelt note or an invitation to continue socializing in the future. Here are some thoughtful ways to wish a colleague a happy retirement.
Sentimental Retirement Gifts
Sentimental gifts take some effort to compile, but they are likely to be cherished by the retiree. “Gift recipients of all kinds love sentimental gifts, ones that remind them of the giver and the relationship the giver has with the recipient,” says Jeff Galak, associate professor of marketing at the University’s Tepper School of Business. Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh. “Donors should focus on gifts that exemplify the relationship they had and hopefully will continue to have with the person retiring. Research shows that this will not only be appreciated by the recipient, but could also strengthen the relationship between the giver and the recipient of the gift. Consider these meaningful retirement gift ideas:
– Photo albums.
— Collections of notes from clients, clients or colleagues.
— A framed photo of the two of you or a team working together.
Experience Retirement Gifts
Retirees have already accumulated a lifetime of assets, but almost everyone appreciates a fun new experience. “Research suggests that experiential gifts are better than material gifts,” says Galak. “That is to say, rather than offering a gold watch, offer a ticket to a concert. Even better would be to give two tickets, and go with the recipient. Not only will the retiree enjoy the experience itself, but they will have the chance to form a stronger bond with the gift giver. Top experience gift ideas for retirees include:
— Tickets for a show, concert or sporting event.
— A gift card for a favorite restaurant.
— A relaxing spa treatment.
— Museum membership.
Social Retirement Gifts
For some people, retirement can mean isolation and loneliness. Consider including a social invite with your gift, such as an offer to have coffee, see a movie or attend a sporting event. “Rather than buying them a material gift, give them time, especially your time,” says Michael Norton, professor of business administration at Harvard Business School and co-author of “Happy Money: The Science of Smarter spending”. “Retirement involves completely changing your daily routine, which included talking with colleagues all day, every day. Make a commitment to spending time with someone who is retiring on a regular basis and you will help them adjust to their new life. These retirement gifts will help you stay in touch with a retired friend:
— Tickets to a movie you will see together.
— A coffee gift card with a suggested meeting date.
— Registration for a group lesson or workshop.
hobby retirement gifts
If you know what the retiree plans to do after leaving the workforce, you can tailor your gift to the retiree’s hobbies or travel plans. “Subscriptions to publications, or to wine or gastronomy clubs, memberships in organizations, cultural events, lessons or activities in which the pensioner has expressed an interest, that is to say, to become more tech-savvy, learning a new language, painting, sculpting – even skydiving or rock climbing,” says Rosanne Thomas, Founder and President of Protocol Advisors. “The person retires from work, not life. an exciting new experience. Gifts vary by hobby, but may include:
— Luggage tags for a traveler.
— New garden tools for a gardener.
— An engraved golf club driver or putter for a golfer.
— Art supplies for those who will pursue painting.
Industry Retirement Gifts
A retirement gift can be related to the field in which you worked. The gift can refer to things the retiree has created, bought or sold at work or the many people they have helped at work. “Different fields of employment could be taken into consideration, making the gift more related to their career. For example, if in aerospace, the gift could be a model of the airplane you helped build. In construction, it could be a new toolbox with an engraving for their garage,” says Pamela Eyring, president of the Protocol School in Washington. “Company culture and industry will help guide your selection.” Consider these career-related retirement gift ideas:
— A model car for someone in the automotive industry.
— Computer chips for tech retirees.
— A collection of student photos and notes for a retiring teacher.
Memorial Retirement Gifts
A classic retirement gift is a watch, necklace, plaque, or other item inscribed with years of service to the company or industry. You might also consider listing remarkable professional achievements. “Gifts that symbolize their dedicated work and show the impact the retiree has had on the organization are appreciated,” Eyring said. “A historical Shutterfly photo book that captures their professional history through photos with colleagues, articles and events. Perhaps a historical painting or engraving of their company. Here’s how to commemorate the retirement of a valued colleague:
— A plaque engraved with the dates of service.
— A framed list of major workplace accomplishments.
— A photo book that recounts significant career moments.
— An inscribed watch or piece of jewelry.
Personalized retirement gifts
An ordinary retirement gift can become special if you take the time to personalize it. Retirement gifts, including T-shirts, mugs, hats, or even golf balls, can be personalized with the retiree’s name, retirement date, occupation, or quote. “When a friend or colleague retires, a personalized gift that reflects their interests, hobbies or sense of humor is a great way to celebrate this milestone,” says Nizzi Renaud, chief brand officer at Zazzle, an online marketplace that sells personalized products and personalized gifts. “Some trends we’re seeing at Zazzle include a set of wine labels for wine lovers, personalized yoga mats for aspiring yogi, art-inspired puzzles for gamers, and headwear from golf monograms for golfers.” Easy-to-customize items for retirees include:
— Photo mugs.
— Engraved hats.
— Printed or embroidered T-shirts.
— An engraved bottle of Champagne, liqueur or wine.
humorous retirement gifts
Your retirement party can be embellished with a good-natured humorous gift. Funny t-shirts and mugs are easy to find online at sites like Etsy and Zazzle. Just be careful not to offend the recipient. “Remember that ‘gag’ giveaways, or any allusion to behaviors or interests that are not suitable for all audiences, should be avoided,” says Thomas. “These may be funny at the time, but quickly lose their charm. You don’t want to be remembered for your tactless gift. Here’s how to give a humorous retirement gift that won’t make people cringe:
— A book of humorous advice on retirement.
— A collection of fun memorabilia about work.
– A story of inside jokes you shared with a colleague.
Group retirement gifts
The most economical way to give a gift is in a group. Consider doing a fundraiser at the office to give an important gift without blowing your budget. “There’s a benefit to coming in as a group,” says Cassie Mogilner Holmes, a professor of marketing and behavioral decision-making at the UCLA Anderson School of Management. “Some experiences are quite expensive, and a truly awesome and amazing experience is somehow better than a single bottle of wine you could buy on your own.” Don’t forget to include a card or article for everyone in the office to sign. You can give an elaborate retirement gift on a limited budget if the entire office or department participates:
— A subscription to an oenological or gastronomic club.
— Organizational memberships.
— Classes or activities, such as language lessons, time in the sculpting studio, or surfing lessons.
— Holiday or travel experiences.
A sincere note
Long after the chocolate has been eaten or the experience enjoyed, a retiree may come across the thoughtful card included with the gift. “Present the gift in person with a heartfelt written and verbal message of thanks for the retiree’s dedication, hard work and accomplishments,” Thomas says. “It’s the appreciation and recognition that people want above all else.” Here are some ideas on what to write on a retirement card:
— Recognize retirement as an important step.
– Share your best memories of working together.
— Indicate what the retiree plans to do in the future.
— Make plans to stay connected.
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Update 4/18/22: This story was published at an earlier date and has been updated with new information.