Everyone knows that Christmas shopping can be the most challenging part of the festive season. Buying for people you know and love is difficult enough and then the work Kris Kindle comes along...
Lucky for you, we're experts in handling the ins and outs of office politics. You. Are. Welcome.
Everyone knows that come Christmas, Kris Kindle also comes a-knocking, so a little prep can go a long way. Keep those ears pricked like one of Santa's elves for anything that your co-workers mention that may frustrate them about their day-to-day, or something useful for their desks to make life easier. Once the game is on, there's little chance of poking around with questions without making it super obvious what you're up to.
Now we're not saying that you go and pull an all out coup, but if there's no one taking charge, then you can nominate yourself and use it to your advantage. If it just happens you pick your mate "by chance" then so be it.
Know Your Enemy
You're not exactly breaking the bank here for someone you make small talk with at the coffee machine, but a tenner can go far if you do your research. Are they into football or rugby? Comic book fan? They might have retweeted some competitions they fancied, or follow their favourite team. Suss out their social media. Some people call this "stalking" but the aim of the game here is to make a colleague smile, so your online impression of Sherlock Holmes could work a treat.
Loads of photos of their kids? Then get them another frame. Loads of mugs? One of their very own won't go amiss. Sparse and tidy to the extent that you question whether they're human? A blood test. No seriously, stay away from this person, they're clearly a Patrick Bateman type.
Remember, Jokes Are For Kids
And unless your chosen Kris Kindler is well known to you and you're fairly confident you get their sense of humour, stay away from joke presents or things with "witty" slogans or catchphrases on them. Nine times out of ten, your gift is going to be misunderstood and met with a false smile and a weak "thank you", and then your "weird" present is the subject of coffee break/water cooler discussion until next Christmas rolls around. If some people don't have as refined a sense of humour as you, accept it and make it your 2016 mission to educate them.
When In Doubt, Mug It Out
If your back is against the wall remember this, no one's ever unhappy with a mug. Also if you've got enough time, and the person receiving the mug is territorial about their drinking apparatus, you can even get one made with their face on it. Their mug on a mug, what's not to love?! Worst case scenario it goes in the pile with the rest of them and come January it's circulating back around to you and you've got yourself a brand spanking new drink receptacle. Best case? Every time they sip their morning brew for the first time, they'll think of YOUR mug. See what we did there?