So where did the gold “retirement watch” really start? As far as we can tell in the United States the tradition of giving gold watches originated back in the 1940s with Pepsi Co. It was a symbol of “you gave us your time, now we are giving you ours”. Back then, the watches were traditionally 18kt gold. There were different versions of the watches given, depending on position and status within the company.
Over the decades that time honored tradition has evolved because of our changed career patterns in a world where people can work for as many as eight or more employers over a lifetime, says Cary Cooper, professor of organisational psychology at Lancaster University. “The issue of loyalty is incredibly important. To reward workers for long service in a short-term world is a very nice thing to do.”
We have seen this in practice at Presentation Watch Company with most of our business clients giving employee gift watches with as little as 5 years or less of service both as a reward and as the employee moves on to another employment opportunity.
Cottrills, a supplier of “reward solutions” to 550 blue-chip clients in England. Mr. Porter is the CEO of Cottrills and says that when Cottrills started 17 years ago, the primary level for long-service awards was 20 to 25 years. Now the first tier can start at five. As for the gifts’ popularity, Cottrills reports that the most popular employee gift has been the gift of a watch.
Humanreasorces.com goes further to point out the real value in giving the right gift for the employee and preferably personalized. The offer this as advice to HR departments around the country when it comes to employee gifts: “It’s kind of like giving someone in your personal life a gift. If you wanted to get someone a gift, but could not rely on throwing cash at them, what would you do? You would actually have to take the time to get to know them (at least a little bit) to see what would interest them. How about a personalized watch. You can match the style with the personality of the employee and give them something that won’t lay in the closet and can be a daily reminder of the recognition of their work by your company. See the difference a little thoughtfulness can make?”
Heavy.com lists the Bulova 98B203 as one of the 10 best retirement gifts you can give.
We sell this watch for $349 which includes a personalized engraving on the back of the watch, a hardwood mahogany presentation box with a brass or nickle engraved plaque on it and free shipping. You can give a thoughtful, beautiful and lifetime lasting award to one of your employees for only $349! Many of our clients report that the employee is sometimes in tears when they receive one of our gifts and the effect spreads beyond the person being recognized
Max S. Beschloss is a 72-year-old former vice president for advertising at watch maker Wittnauer International. When Mr. Beschloss retired from Wittnauer after 25 years he was given a solid-gold Lifetime Plus watch, guaranteed to be repaired free until the death of a designated heir, which he figured would be his 40-year-old middle son, Adam. Watches passe as a gift!? ”Most jewelers would disagree,” Mr. Beschloss said. ”It’s something you see every day of your life, a reminder of the company’s gratitude.”
DIXI Le Locle Holding is a Swiss based maker of high-precision machine tools with operations in the United States. The company offers cash or a gold watch to its retiring employees at its home base. But, Mr. Castella boasted “that 90 percent of them take the watch. It’s something that they can look at everyday to remind them of the work they have done for us with pride and a sense of satisfaction.”
When colleagues or coworkers are retiring, a brilliant way to mark the occasion is with great retirement gifts. It’s not considered mandatory, but is a good way to celebrate a person’s working life. The best retirement gifts don’t need to be elaborate, extravagant or expensive. But they should convey your feelings of appreciation, and express how much you’ve enjoyed working with them, however long it’s been. When it’s a friend or family member that’s retiring, giving retirement gifts is a good way to show how proud you are of all the retiree has done. Adding a touch of personalization is a great way to make even the most common of gifts more special. Most retirement gifts lend themselves well to personalization, adding a name, the date of their retirement, or a message that says thanks for all her hard work will make a gift truly unique.