1. Show personality, and send out a signed holiday card in the mail (not with your name imprinted). If snail-mail is out of the question for you, create an email with a nice graphic or even a video message.
2. Accept invitations and attend the holiday events you are invited to, even if it’s a “drive by” only for a few minutes. This is key to having an enjoyable time and interacting on a personal level. And don’t get crazy or drunk and end up being the subject of the guests the next day. Please be courteous enough to RSVP ASAP.
3. Give appropriate gifts to customers — and please, if they don’t drink, don’t send booze. Know them!! If you send food, make sure they aren’t traveling and will be at home or at the office to accept your gift. My favorite (and always gets a great reaction) is the big apples with chocolate and nuts on them from Mrs. Prindables.
4. Another nice way to show your appreciation is to take your customers to lunch. Extend dinner invitations to your best customers. If need be delay it till January if they are too busy.
5. Take part in staff grab bags or similar gift exchanges. Underwear or re-gifting is unacceptable.
6. Try to go to lunch and/or take part in a pot luck lunch with your team. Splitting the bill is fine, but if you are the boss, please pick up the tab or buy the entrée for the pot luck.
7. For vendors or others who have been helpful to you in your career or who have had an impact on your results, consider giving them a small token of thanks. My experience is they will do even more for you down the line.
8. Please consider donating time and or money to those in need…from toys to food banks.
9. Smile a lot and enjoy the season. Reflect on the year’s highlights, learn from the lowlights and think big for 2017.
Sidebar: If you are a Cubs fan – you got your gift of a lifetime.
Al Maag is author of the book “Social Media Isn’t Social” available on Amazon.com; and a principal at MaagComm+