If you need to give a colleague a gift, flowers are a great gift for coworkers. They are beautiful, smell great and are essentially universally loved by all. You will be hard-pressed to find someone that doesn’t appreciate being given some flowers. They are very versatile and come in all different shapes and sizes.
However, it is important to keep in mind the flower etiquette at the workplace. The rules are often different than if you were giving flowers to your significant other on your anniversary or to your mother on Mothers Day. If you aren’t aware of this and don’t think of it, it can make things fairly awkward in some situations.
In an effort to help you out, this blog post is going to go over some of the things to know about flower etiquette at the workplace.
Keep it Subtle
There are a ton of different flowers to choose from, but when giving and/or having them at the office, being subtle is relatively important. This is both in terms of how they look and how they smell. When it comes to looks, the bouquets you give should be tasteful and nice, but generally not too large and over the top. Also, avoid any huge collections of flowers that come with things like balloons, as they can be a distraction.
When it comes to scents you should also choose things that offer a lighter scent than one that is overly heavy and “in your face”. If the flowers are kept at the workplace, some people might be sensitive to the smell or may not want to smell floral nodes all day at work. Always keep those around you in mind.
Also, be careful of allergies. Many flowers aren’t great for people with allergies, so consider avoiding these unless you know for sure that the recipient or any nearby coworkers aren’t allergic. Thankfully, if allergies are an issue, there are many types of flowers that are hypoallergenic.
The Right Occasions to Send Flowers
You also need to know and be aware of the right occasions and times to send or give flowers in the workplace. In general, they are appropriate for things like birthdays, office celebrations, to show appreciation and even as a gift to new mothers. It can also be appropriate to give sympathy flowers, but make sure to find out if they are accepting flowers or if they have requested something else, instead.
However, you generally don’t want to give Valentine’s Day flowers in an office setting, as that is generally more personal. Of course, each office will have its own rules, so be sure to find out what is acceptable at your place of work.
Also, if you are going to send flowers to one coworker or boss, it can be a good idea to send them to others, as well. The last thing you want is to make anyone feel bad, so if you start this practice, it is a good idea to commit to it.
Don’t Forget the Personalized Message
While flowers are a great gift, they can often be a little general and lack personalization. If you want to make a gift to your coworker a little more personal, consider including a personalized note. This can be very easy and affordable to do, and can certainly add a different element to the gift than if you had just given the flowers themselves.
Of course, the contents of the notes or message will depend on the occasion, and how close you are with the individual. It could be saying thank you for their help on a project, saying happy birthday or offering sympathies after a workplace injury or other negative event.
This will ensure the recipient not only enjoys your flowers, but will always remember who they were from and see your reasoning for providing them. Be sure to begin the note with a greeting, and do your best to include a little story or anecdote to make it more personal.
In conclusion, we hope that this article has helped you understand a little more about flower etiquette in the workplace. They are often appropriate for a variety of occasions, but be sure to ask your managers or refer to the guidelines in place.