AfB Christmas Gifting Survey Highlights:

  • Two fifths of Brits would choose shopping vouchers over an extra days holiday as the ideal Christmas gift from their boss
  • Out of date Easter eggs, vegetable peelers and even cat food given by bosses
  • Almost half receive no gift at all at Christmas from their bosses (42.7%)

Hard working Brits have snubbed an additional days holiday in favour of shopping vouchers as the ideal Christmas gift to receive from their bosses, a survey has revealed.

Proving that the British work ethic is alive and well, two fifths (40%) of the nation’s workforce would warmly welcome gift vouchers from their employers this festive season, compared to only 31% keen for an extra lie in.

Sadly, for over 42% of workers there’s not even a lump of coal waiting for them at their desks, with the poll of over 7,000 Brits revealing they receive no yuletide reward at all from their miserly managers.

The research commissioned by Argos for Business – a leading provider of merchandise, incentive and motivation solutions for businesses and organisations – has also exposed some of the biggest gifting gaffes made by employers during the festive period.

Vegetable peelers, cat food (for a worker with no cat), a banana, a frozen chicken, a live turkey, and even a ‘dance off’, ala David Brent, have been some of the most misguided ‘rewards’ offered by the UK’s employers.

One man was also surprised to receive a hairdressing voucher, presumably to help him look his best ahead of the office Christmas bash – even though he’s bald.

After shopping vouchers, Brits’ desired Christmas list includes luxury gifts, such as a food hamper or iPad (15.3%) and experience days like a pampering spa session or taking a supercar for a spin (5.1%).

For those who are treated by their employer though, 37.1% said it made them feel more motivated when heading back to the office after the holidays, with around two thirds (66.4%) saying that this motivation lasted into the New Year and beyond.

Commenting on the results of the survey, Danny Clenaghan, Managing Director at Argos for Business, said: “While some of the gifts given by employers seem strange, it just goes to show that there can be a lack of understanding from bosses as to what will be the most effective motivator for their staff. It could also be the case that employers simply don’t have the knowledge of what is available by way of rewards and incentives in order to make the right choice to suit the needs of their workforce, and their business.

“These results not only demonstrate Britain’s strong work ethic, but the vital role that staff rewards play in helping employees to feel thanked for a job well done, over and above their salary.”

Out of those who never receive a gift regionally, the South East is more frugal than festive with 20.5% left rummaging around empty Christmas stockings from their bosses, the Tiny Tims of the Midlands account for 16.7% of gift-less staff and 14.3% of the naughty North West never making Santa’s nice list.

Mr Clenaghan added: “At Argos for Business, we offer our staff a range of benefits throughout the year, designed to boost morale and strengthen staff relations through team experiences on an on-going basis.  These include performance bonuses, discounts on Argos products and a contribution to a staff Christmas party to ensure that everybody feels rewarded. We also hold seasonal inter-department competitions and teambuilding exercises to bring employees together and encourage interaction.”

A round-up of some of the worst Christmas gifts – as received by Britain’s workers from their bosses:

  • 12 bags of dog food
  • Five extra minutes on the tea break
  • A cup of soup
  • An out of date Easter egg
  • Free crisps
  • A packet of planting seeds
  • Royal Jelly
  • Tumble dryer freshening sheets

Regions least likely to receive a gift from their employer:

  1. South East (20.5%)
  2. Midlands (16.7%)
  3. North West (14.3%)
  4. North East (11.4%)
  5. London (11.3%)
  6. Scotland (10%)
  7. South West (8.5%)
  8. Wales (3.9%)
  9. Northern Ireland (3.4%)

For more information about Argos for Business, please visit


For further editorial information please contact Stephanie Brookes or Alyssa Harrison at JAMpr Ltd on 0161 850 0565 or at /

Notes to editors

Argos for Business (AfB) is a leading provider of merchandise, incentive and motivation solutions for businesses and organisations throughout the UK.  Working across a range of sectors including FMCG, financial services, promotional agencies, education, healthcare and social housing, AfB has a range of market leading propositions that help clients to maximise performance, increase sales and make the most of their budgets.

Established for over 30 years, and now part of Home Retail Group, AfB provides clients with access to two of the UK’s leading retailers, Argos and Homebase. AfB works with companies or organisations of any size to provide flexible solutions for a range of issues and challenges facing them today. It also has a range of purchasing and procurement solutions for companies buying single items or in bulk.  In the public sector this can include organisations wishing to control the distribution of funds or grants to tenants or those eligible for welfare support.