Today, I gave a gift and got a gift. While the one I gave was perfectly appropriate and darn tasty, the one I received was a total knockout. Whether you realize it or not, the gifts you give – at least in the professional world – are a reflection of your brand. And if you’re not giving gifts on a regular basis, you’re either not asking for help often enough or you’re not acknowledging the help you’re receiving.
My gift was Belgian chocolate brownies given to a fellow who runs the website for one of the speaker bureaus with whom I work. It was a blatant bribe, as I declared quite openly in the accompanying card, thanking him in advance for allowing me to snag fifteen minutes of his precious time next week.
We know each other (I’m not sure I’d try this approach with someone I’d never met) so I know he’ll appreciate the humor and the treats. He’ll get some killer brownies and my sincere appreciation and I’ll get his attention. It works all around and is a good reflection on my brand – for transparency, action, and gratitude for a terrific colleague.
Now for the gift I got, well, it was different right from the get-go. As a thank you, my client Elizabeth Alvarez booked fifteen minutes of my time for a “delivery” to my office. The delivery turned out to be a 3-parter: a handmade hula-hoop, a hooping lesson and a hoop dancing demonstration by hoopologist extraordinaire Tisha Marina. She’s even hooped at the White House!
Turns out hooping burns 100 calories in 10 minutes – who knew? I got a great workout and a big boost to my day. So what does Elizabeth’s gift say about her brand? That she’s wildly creative, totally original and definitely goes to the extra mile. I’ll hoop to that!