How to Choose the Perfect Retirement Gift for a Valued Colleague

It is often said, when addressing the topic of friendships and entirely platonic relationships, that it is not about the length of time you have known someone, but rather the intensity of the connection. Similarly, when it comes to friendships between people who see each other every day at work, there may well be a colleague in the same department who has worked there for decades yet morning pleasantries are the extent of conversation.

Another colleague could only have recently joined the company but has already ‘clicked’ with one or more members of their team.

Regardless of how long you have known your soon-to-be retired workmate, continue reading to learn how the choose the perfect retirement gift.

Avoid Generic Cliches

Naturally, you would be hard-pressed to find even a couple of people who would turn their nose up at a large box of luxury chocolates or a beautiful bouquet of flowers as a gift.

When it comes to picking a retirement gift, however, you should look to avoid such cliched gifts and generic items bought form the local store or gas station. Instead, search for more unique and exclusive items which will not only make a memorable gift but are also personally related to your colleague’s interests and hobbies.

A fantastic example of personalizing a gift to make it more sentimental is to look for professional and established bottle engraving services, such as through, to buy your colleague’s favorite beer or spirit and have the bottle itself engraved with a personal message.

Ensure Company-Wide Input

Obviously, if the company you and your retiring colleague work for is a national or even more pertinently, an international one, to have every single employee and manager contribute would be practically impossible.

You can, however, at least attempt to have as many members of the team as possible sign the retirement card itself. Furthermore, you could even arrange video messages from ex-colleagues or those who are currently on vacation or out of state.

Inspire a New Hobby

Another fabulous idea when planning a stand-out and truly memorable leaving gift is to search for a hobby that you are almost positive that your colleague would either be good at, enjoy or (in an ideal world) both.

For example, if your valued workmate has sporadically expressed even a passing interest in sewing and needlecraft, setting them up with their very own sewing machine provides them with the ideal springboard to pursue it.

Avoid Anything Work-Related

Finally (and perhaps most important of all to remember before you set foot in the store to start looking for the right gift), you must always strive to avoid anything which is even remotely work-related.

That is not to say, of course, that if you work in a hospital, you cannot include a jokey present as part of your colleague’s leaving party, but the main component of their gift should be something entirely disconnected from work and to provide entertainment and inspiration in their new phase of life.

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