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Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

Naperville, IL
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41 posts
5 reviews
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Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

My husband is going over to Ipswich, England for business in a couple of weeks. He wants to bring something over from the US to the folks in the office in England. I've read some other postings on gifts to bring over, but many of the ideas are personal that you might bring for a friend or as a thank you for staying with friends.

This needs to be something a group could share...perhaps some kind of food or candy. Would really appreciate any of your ideas and suggestions.

Thanks so much.

Stanley, Falkland...
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1. Re: Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

Just to say, I've worked with many US colleagues, and I've never heard of this practice.

While the intention may be worthy, I can see it being slightly embarrassing in a UK office environment.

If he still wants to go ahead, I'd say something like a basketball (with hoop and instructions)!

We aren't quite at the stage of needing food parcels, but maybe next year...:-)

shoestring-UK
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2. Re: Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

How soon we forget...food parcels from America during the war years would cause excitement in a whole street. Or does the distrust of Yanks with their chocolate and nylons (over paid, over sexed and over here) still run deep?

We seem to have replaced the simple courtesy of bringing a gift to our hosts with 'beware strangers bearing gifts'. Maybe to lovely folk in Naperville still bring a welcome basket to new neighbours and I for one wish we could hold on to those sentiments.

So bring on the candy...and hope the Brits don't offer humbugs in return.

Chester, United...
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3. Re: Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

It was common with my last job (with a major bank) for us to take English things over when we were traveling to our USA offices. Cadbury's Dairy Milk bars, chocolate digestive biscuits and boxes of Cadbury's Roses chocolates were the usual ones.

Similarly when our USA colleagues visited us in London they brought us something like Ghirardelli chcolate squares , Goldfish crackers or Hersheys Kisses. (I preferred the Ghiradellis ;-) )

So yes bring something. It's a nice friendly gesture. Keep it low key and not too personal and choose something that all the team can share.

Hope you enjoy your trip.

Chester, United...
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4. Re: Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

Oh one more - Dilbert mints were are lot of fun in a business setting. I've a friend who still sends me a tin every Christmas and they're great in meetings here.

Southampton
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5. Re: Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

I would just stay away from Hershey's chocolate. Almost no-one who is not American likes it. All it has in common with real chocolate is the colour.

There have been several posts on these boards about bringing gifts and they're always from Americans. This leads me to believe that gift giving to strangers (often for B&B owners/hoteliers who are totally unknown to the visitor) must be really common in the US, but it isn't really here. In my office for example we bring chocolate or sweets back from our holidays to share around the place. but we would never expect someone who was our guest to bring anything. If anything, we would treat them. Probably by taking them out for a meal.

I think the whole situation depends on the office environment and probably your husband will know about that. Some cheap edibles as you suggest would probably be the safest bet. Otherwise you risk the situation becoming very embarassing as people might feel awkward receiving such a gift when they didn't bring anything in return, or even worse, patronised.

Stanley, Falkland...
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6. Re: Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

"We seem to have replaced the simple courtesy of bringing a gift to our hosts with 'beware strangers bearing gifts'"

If it were hosts that you were staying with, I would agree, but it is business colleagues. I am just saying that it is not something I have come across despite 10 years and many meetings with US colleagues. If that's what they do in Naperville and Ipswich, then that's fine. My comment about the food parcel was a joke, indicated by --> :-)

I agree with Akkarin -

"In my office for example we bring chocolate or sweets back from our holidays to share around the place. but we would never expect someone who was our guest to bring anything. If anything, we would treat them. Probably by taking them out for a meal"

7. Re: Gifts/Food to Bring Business Colleagues

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