Since its creation in 1958, there’s been one key question swirling around National Boss’s Day…
How much do I really need to spend on someone who makes more money than I do?
Our suggestion — based on personal experience — is to chip in with your officemates. This has three advantages: There’s no competition to suck up, it’s cheaper on you, and you get to give something nicer with your combined contributions.
We suggest spending no more than $10 per person. So here are our ideas for employees in groups ranging from one to five…
1. One employee: Lemon balm plant
Price: $10 from Etsy
Studies show that the scent of lemon oil can improve your mood, and this plant is hardy enough to survive almost any office environment because it doesn’t need much sunlight. When life gives your boss lemons, at least he’ll be able to smell them.
2. Two employees: Wall-hanging fishbowl
Price: $17 from Target
Save the valuable space on your boss’ desk with this acrylic fishbowl, which mounts on the wall and is less breakable than glass. If your boss isn’t a fish fan, use it for a decorative mini zen garden instead.
3. Three employees: Cheery day umbrella
Price: $24 from Great Lookz
For the boss who’s always borrowing your rain gear. This umbrella is the perfect way to chase away dreary-day blues. Black on the outside, it opens to reveal a cheerful blue sky with fluffy little clouds.
4. Three employees: Digital photo frame
Price: $30 from Best Buy
There’s no reason that your boss has to stare at that same family photo from his or her 2003 Disney World trip. Upgrade their photo display with an auto-rotating slideshow of digital images. (If your boss is always asking you to fix his computer, you may have to provide technical assistance on this one.)
5. Four employees: Vibrating foot massager
Price: $35 from Sears
For the boss who’s always on her toes, this beaded, cushioned massager provides relief for aching feet. It can be stowed away under your boss’ desk, and comes with high and low intensity settings.
6. Four employees: Cube clock
Price: $38 from MoMA
For the boss who’s always running behind. The coolest feature is the snap activation: Snap your fingers and the cube lights up to show the time, date, and temperature. The clock has three built-in alarms as well as a “dim” function, making everyone’s least favorite part of the day a little bit easier.
7. Five employees: Newton’s light-up cradle
Price: $50 from ThinkGeek
For the boss who’s always talking about maintaining momentum. ThinkGeek has a kinetic light-up version of Newton’s Cradle, complete with multicolored LEDs in each glass sphere.