30 Horrifying Presents Managers Actually Bought for Employees

Have you bought a present for your direct reports yet? While it’s not obligatory, it is rather traditional. However, it’s better to give nothing at all than it is to give the presents these bosses gave.

I asked people about the worst present they’ve ever received from a boss. Here are 30 of the worst.

  1. My boss bought me candles that smelled like men’s armpits. She apparently loved the smell.
  2. I seriously received a gift I had given her about 4 months earlier. She said,” I hope you like it! It reminded me of you!”
  3. Victoria’s Secret gift card. Thought maybe his wife did the shopping until he added the comment, (I had just gotten engaged), he knew there were certain things I needed to buy. 

To keep reading, click here: 30 Horrifying Presents Managers Actually Bought for Employees

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14 thoughts on “30 Horrifying Presents Managers Actually Bought for Employees

  1. The best holiday gift I ever got was when a manager allowed all 85 employees to each order up to $30 worth from Amazon, all paid out of her personal pocket. The following year, the new manager gave everyone a small bag of assorted beans, with a recipe for bean soup attached. I expect they cost 99 cents at the Dollar Store. We all got a good laugh about it — were they magic beans, maybe? — and most of them ended up in the trash can or the collection box for our Christmas charity donations. The following year, we got absolutely nothing for holiday gifts.

  2. For at least a couple of these, I don’t think the present was the problem…an ungrateful recipient can find fault in anything.

      1. The one who got carrots in her stocking instead of candy. I thought that was a very thoughtful gift.

  3. Dear Evil —

    Lucky for you I wasn’t drinking hot coffee when I started reading this, because I was laughing so hard (literally, out loud) that I know I would have spilled it, burned myself, and would have to sue.

    Please make this a Christmas tradition (maybe ask your Swiss acquaintances next year).

    Thank you for bringing a few moments of happiness and sunshine into an otherwise dreary and looong COVID-at-home day.

  4. Many years ago, I worked briefly for a very small company. The owner’s Dad (in his 80’s) maintained an office on the first floor. One day he called me down to his office. He had a stack of women’s underwear on his desk. His housekeeper made underwear as a side hobby. So, he brought them in for all “the girls” and insisted that I pick out 2 pairs for me!
    There’s just not enough space to tell me more of this but, I saved them for a long time. Just to remember what a train wreck of a place this was.

  5. Great laugh article including the comments. As to the underwear comment, as raunchy as it sounds in today’s era,( I think the problem there, was the giver) those were probably the best-made garments if they came from a private tailor in those days. Giving is so hard to do these days because we really don’t have great choices within monetary guidelines plus not all of us are shopaholics.

  6. I worked for a job placement company that required that we all use pseudonyms. To save money, our pseudonyms were chosen by reaching into the supply closet for a left over stack of business cards from some previous employee. That made me Sandy Scott. For Christmas I got a personalized coffee mug that said “Sandy.”

    1. I suspect the entire reason they insisted you use pseudonyms was so they wouldn’t have to reprint business cards. (And odds are, that mug was sitting in the same supply cabinet when you were hired. Be thankful they at least washed it after the last Sandy left.)

  7. You reminded me of the year I received a hat/gloves set guessing it was maybe 10 dollars. It was shown at the discount stores and drug stores but I thought it was the thought that counted. A week later I was let go and the owner asked for the present back. She said I was leaving anyway so give it back. There is no excuse for rudeness, poor manners and a lack of common sense.

  8. About 10 years ago, our manager gave everyone in the team iTunes gift cards. When we tried to redeem them, it turned out they were valid in Germany only and not in our country. Later on we discovered he had gotten them for free during a business trip in Germany.

  9. My first boss got me the nicest ceramic travel mug with my first initial on it. She was so worried I wouldn’t like it because I’m more alternative than most of the people she knew, but it was and still is one of the sweetest presents someone bought me.

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