This year, Dutch employers are expected to hand out some 4.7 million Christmas boxes to their staff – it is a very Dutch way of saying thank you. Yet every year, research is published saying most people don’t really appreciate the parcel which was probably ordered way back in September.
For example, research today said of the 4.2 million Christmas boxes bought last year, almost 1.5 million ended up in the bin or in the back of the kitchen cupboard. And two out of three workers say they would prefer cash, a gift token or a company outing to a cardboard box containing a clock and some tinned chicken.
It would be churlish to say that a lot of thought had not gone into the boxes. Themed parcels are the order of the day. So for example, for €35.89 including VAT you could treat your staff to the Outdoor box – which includes a red rucksack, a tin of tuna chunks and some apple juice (for the picnic?) and a cuddly toy.
But be sure to keep an eye on the price. Spend more than €35 per worker and the box becomes liable for tax. But if employers decided to give the money to charity instead, it would not be appreciated either.
Earlier this month the Christmas Box Information Bureau – yes such a thing does actually exist – said that 92% thought the tradition should continue. Miniature woks and all.